ISLAMABAD: Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed vowed to make Pakistan No 1 cricket team in all the three formats.
Sarfraz, who was recently appointed Test skipper as well, will now lead the national team in all the three formats. He became T20 captain after the 2016 World T20, when Shahid Afridi stepped down. He was nominated ODI captain after Azhar Ali resigned in February this year and after Misbah’s retirement at the end of Pakistan’s tour of the West Indies in May, he was appointed Test team captain.
“We will try our best to fulfill nation’s expectation by winning future events also. It will be our effort to make Pakistan the No 1 team in all formats of the game,” he said while speaking at a reception held by the management of a local hotel here to recognise Pakistan’s historic ICC Champions Trophy win in England.
Sarfraz said that the win in ICC Champions trophy was the result of team work. “All the players worked hard and fought like a unit to emerge victorious,” he said. He said initially Pakistan team failed to deliver but later on it bounced back strongly and defeated world’s top side in the event to emerge victorious.
Speaking on the occasion, Pakistan Super League (PSL) head Najam Sethi said it was heartening that Pakistan’s young players played a key role in team’s win in ICC Champions Trophy. He said the PSL helped a lot in bringing forth young players, who were now part of the national team.
Appreciating skipper Sarfraz Ahmed, he said Pakistan team captain had proved that he could lead from the front. He said it was encouraging that Pakistan team had started to deliver after a long time adding, “We’ve still to go a long way to improve our ranking.”
Meanwhile, Champions Trophy winning Pakistan cricket team is getting receptions from all corners of the country, as recently, they were warmly welcome and honoured by capital city Islamabad’s business giants Hashoo Group and Centaurus Mall.
Hashoo Group chairman Sadruddin Hashwani and deputy chairman Murtaza Hashwani hosted a reception in honour of Pakistan cricket team here at the Marriot Hotel on late Wednesday night. The event was attended by skipper Sarfraz Ahmed, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam, Haris Sohail, Fakhar Zaman, Imad Wasim, Rumman Raes, Wahab Riaz, Shadab Khan and Hassan Ali, while PCB executive committee chairman Najam Sethi, governing board member Shakil Shaikh, Rawalpindi region head Major (r) Naeem Gillani, ambassadors, business community and celebrities.
Sadruddin Hashwani awarded cheque of Rs 0.5 million to Sarfaraz Ahmed and Rs 0.3 million to the rest of 15 players. Sharing his views, Sadruddin lauded the performance of the team and congratulated them for uniting the entire nation by virtue of this great win. “The young team demonstrated dedication, excellence and patriotism all the way. It was not just Pakistan cricket team’s victory, in fact, the entire nation stood victorious. Cricketers are real ambassadors of the country. Pakistan is a peace loving country, team is highly talented, Sarfraz led from the front and team enable us to raise our heads high.
Centaurus Mall, a privately run plaza owner, also arranged reception-cum-lunch at their housing society on Thursday. Pakistan cricket team skipper Sarfraz Ahmed was awarded with 1-kanal plot at the housing society, while centurion in the final Fakhar Zaman was given Rs 5 lac and other 14 players of the team were awarded Rs 2 lac each for their outstanding performance in the Champions Trophy.
The team was given welcome by Naval band, folk dancers also gave lively performance and rose petal were showered on players. In his message to the national team, owner of the housing society Sardar Tanveer Ilyas presented his whole-hearted facilitations on defeating India in the final. He promised to look after the sporting heroes and also announced apartments to journalist community. Sarfraz Ahmed also cut a cake to celebrate the team’s victory.
Meanwhile, the hosts, in a press release, said that they had discussed with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) about the cash incentives and also clearly informed the board that they would award Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed 1-kanal plot at the housing society, while Fakhar Zaman would be given Rs 5 lac and other 14 players Rs 2 lac each, which the baord agreed, and the prizes were announced accordingly.