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Tuesday November 30, 2021

Gladiators will play every match like final: Sarfraz

June 11, 2021

ISLAMABAD: With their back already pushed to the wall, having lost four of the five matches in the Karachi leg of Pakistan Super League (PSL) VI, Quetta’s Gladiators captain Sarfraz Ahmad admitted they are facing a must-win situation now.

In a virtual media talk from Abdu Dhabi Thursday, a day ahead of their match against Islamabad United on Friday, Sarfraz said they would take every match from here on as if they were playing the final. “We are already behind on the table and cannot afford any more defeats. If we want to make it to knockout stage we have to win each match from here on so it is all to play for in Abu Dhabi. We have to put in the best in every department of the game to stay in the competition,” he added.

He agreed with ‘The News’ that instead of big hitting and huge scores, the team requires 160 to 170 in total to pose a real challenge to the team chasing the target. “That should be the approach — you are right — it is not the pitch where scoring big, getting involved in power hitting would fetch you the required results. Around 160 looks like a daunting target for the opposing team to chase. Quetta have more explosive power hitters than others yet we want to play according to the situation and leave a few overs only for the power hitters to go on an all-out attack,” he added.

He congratulated Azam Khan on his selection on the national team. “The PSL provided him the right platform to express himself and get ready for the big occasion,” he said.

Sarfraz just had a few sessions in the nets as he arrived late in the UAE. “I faced traveling problems and that was the reason for my spending more time in quarantine and less in training and practice. What I focus on will be to take the team along and make sure we cash in on the opportunities coming our way,” he said.

The Gladiators captain said he missed great Viv Richards as he had been a real inspiration for the team. “His presence with the team always lifted our spirits. Due to Covid-19 ups and downs, he was unable to join us for the second leg,” he added.

The Gladiators captain said every member of the team was told about his specific role. “Every player knows well what the requirements are and what his role is in staging a comeback. I am hopeful that whatever mistakes we committed during our Karachi leg of matches will not be repeated. Every member of the team is capable of delivering and making the best use of his abilities. What we want from our batsmen is to stay at the wicket and make sure that there are enough wickets to go for a kill in the later part of the 20 overs. And when it comes to restricting opponents we should make the best of our bowling abilities. We have got some of the best spinners in Zahir Khan, Zahid Mehmood, Mohammad Nawaz. They are all capable of running through opponents’ batting line on a track suitable to spin,” said the wicketkeeper batsman.