Ramiz Raja, chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), has dismissed criticism levelled at the current national cricket team, saying that the team can win the ICC Men's Twenty20 World Cup, which begins next month.
The home series against England is vital for Pakistan as part of preparations for the biggest cricket event, the T20 World Cup, he said, interacting with journalists as he arrived at the National Stadium Karachi to watch the opener of the seven-match Twenty20 Internationals series on Tuesday.
"We welcome England back. We worked very hard to bring England to Pakistan after they left the country resentful."
England defeated Pakistan in the series opener.
He said this as he arrived at the National Stadium Karachi to watch the opener of the seven-match T20I series against England. The tourists defeated Pakistan by six wickets.
The PCB chief said he was only focusing on cricket.
Responding to a question regarding the team's performance, he supported the team, saying, "First of all, it is the team that played the final of the Asia Cup. Additionally, this team has routed India in the Asia Cup," he noted. He also asked whether or not the team deserves some leeway.
The PCB chief continued to say he tries to communicate to Babar Azam that he will have to win every single match. "I ask Babar Azam to always keep this pressure on him as the memory of cricket fans is very short."
Replying to a query regarding chairs at the stadium, he said the import of new chairs is on hold, so the fans are sitting on the caterer's chairs.
It was an unwarranted controversy regarding pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi, he said, adding, "How can anyone say that we will not take care of our player?"
He said that Shaheen is being rehabilitated in England. The PCB is sending Fakhar to England for rehabilitation, he said, adding the board is also taking care of Rizwan.
He announced Shaheen would be in the Pakistan squad for the World Cup.
Replying to a question regarding the former cricketers' criticism of the team selection, Ramiz Raja underscored the need to back the team. However, he said ex-players may have different opinions on the selection of the team and there is no harm.
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