Wicket-keeper batter Mohammad Rizwan backed young players of the national side who have come under criticism following Pakistan's defeat in the T20I series against Afghanistan in Sharjah on Sunday.
Afghanistan triumphed over Pakistan by seven wickets in the second T20I, sealing a historic series win. The two teams will meet in the third and final T20I today at the same venue.
Taking to Twitter, Rizwan asked young players to stay strong despite their loss.
"I strongly believe in these young superstars of Pakistan cricket. Stay strong. Let these losses fuel your inner fire. Keep working hard. Keep believing. You are champions. You will come back with a bang," Rizwan tweeted.
After winning the first two T20Is convincingly, Afghanistan won the series which was their first ever against Pakistan.
After the regime change in Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), there were a lot of talks regarding resting main players keeping in mind the ICC World Cup year.
The PCB decided to rest its main players including captain Babar, Rizwan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Fakhar Zaman, and Haris Rauf during the series against Afghanistan.
A young squad led by Shadab took the challenge against Afghanistan who played with their full strength. Pakistan's inexperienced batting line collapsed in the first two T20Is which cost them the series.
Afghanistan beat Pakistan 2-0, with a match to go, to register its first-ever series win against the neighbours.
Pakistan will next face New Zealand in the five-match T20I series at home next month. Main players including Babar, Rizwan, and others are likely to return to the squad.
Meanwhile, New Zealand announced their squad for the T20I series against Pakistan. Their main players missed out due to their participation in the upcoming season of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
New Zealand's T20I squad: Tom Latham (c, wk), Chad Bowes, Mark Chapman, Dane Cleaver, Matt Henry, Ben Lister, Adam Milne, Cole McConchie, Daryl Mitchell, Jimmy Neesham, Rachin Ravindra, Henry Shipley, Ish Sodhi, Blair Tickner, Will Young
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