Rotation policy to help Pakistan form good combination, says Rizwan

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DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 11: Mohammad Rizwan of Pakistan acknowledges the fans after he walks back to the pavilion after he gets out by Mitchell Starc during the ICC Men's T20 World Cup semi-final match between Pakistan and Australia at Dubai International Stadium on November 11, 2021 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Matthew Lewis-ICC/ICC via Getty Images)

By our correspondent

KARACHI: Pakistan team is currently busy settling its scratchy combination for the ICC T20 World Cup which will begin in Australia next month. And the country’s experienced wicket-keeper batsman and the man in form Mohammad Rizwan on Tuesday said that he hoped that through the ‘rotation policy’ something better will be gained for the World Cup.

“I hope that something better will be achieved for the World Cup through the rotation policy,” Rizwan told a post-match news conference on Tuesday after Pakistan were beaten by England by six wickets in their first game of the seven-match T20 series here at the National Stadium.

Rizwan admitted that the team faces more dot balls which leaves an adverse effect on its performance.

“Yes, dot balls are more and we will work on this,” Rizwan said.

He also tried to defend his middle order, saying they believe in their middle order.

“As far as the middle order is concerned, we don’t defend anyone. As far as I am concerned, so I am playing with an honest approach and I don’t care what people are saying. In the last event our middle order exposed a bit as in a couple of matches the things did not work. And it appears that our middle order has flopped but as a team we have full confidence in our middle order and whenever we will need its contribution it will give us runs,” Rizwan said.

Asked what were the basic reasons behind Pakistan’s defeat in the series opener against England Rizwan said that effort is being made to settle down the chemistry of the unit.

“The first thing is that everyone knows that little bit of changes are being made and effort is being made to constitute a combination. Here mistakes will definitely occur. It’s a first game and I think mistakes should not be discussed at this level as the things are before everyone,” Rizwan said.

“The seven-match series in hand is to build a strong combination for the World Cup and we try to get something from these experiences which could help us in the World Cup,” said Rizwan.

Asked whether the middle order is exposed, Rizwan said: “Our team faces some issues in certain areas.”

“As far as our middle order is concerned, I and skipper have been doing well upfront for the last one and a half years and our middle order has not been tested much. If they even have got a chance, someone has played ten balls and someone has faced 12 balls. If you see power-hitters in the world, they score in two or three innings out of 12. It does not happen that they score 50 or 60 in every game. Yes, we are observing whether they improve at certain stages in strike rate which requires at a particular stage. It also depends on conditions. If you look at the Asia Cup, conditions there were tough. It was not only tough for Pakistan but also for some other great players who were playing there,” Rizwan explained.

Rizwan ruled out the impression that he faces any issue with the ball that pitches on the off-stump.

“I have no problem,” Rizwan said.

“If I can hit it from off-stump to mid-wicket so I also can hit it in the cover. It’s my own mind and will. Yes, it’s a fact that whenever I lose focus my body does not respond so I play a sort of stroke which forces people to think that I cannot play in that area. Yes, I am trying and those who think for me like this, God bless them, and I will try to improve,” said the stumper who led Pakistan’s batting with a gallant 68 on Tuesday.

Rizwan also ruled out the impression that he is injured.

“There are talks about my injury. I am sitting in front of you and if you want, I will run for a few rounds. I don’t know who is talking about this,” Rizwan clarified.

“If you want to see the areas where Pakistan is struggling, I request them to also see the opposition. If we struggle at any stage, you should also look at our oppositions at which stage they are ahead of us. If you see the innings of Alex Hales, he has faced 40 plus balls. No doubt he has played a fine innings, I say this because in 150 plus if one goes deep, he takes the game. If we talk about the power-play, today we won. The thing is that it depends on the situation. Some pitches are of 200 and some are of 140 and 170, so I request all to see these things,” Rizwan said.

Asked whether they changed intent as they scored 80 plus in nine overs Rizwan replied furiously.

“I don’t know who is talking like this,” Rizwan said.

“Those who talk like this may Allah bless them because he does not think for me and the skipper but for the whole Pakistan. I don’t know any player or media talk like this and he thinks that our skipper’s strike rate is low then God bless them. I don’t know but those who think like this, I will tell you that if I and the skipper or any other player don’t play with honesty in the middle will be deserted. The person who is talking like this if he is doing this from his own side then God will desert him. He will not get any honour. Honesty is the priority for the country. God will honour them who will be honest for the country,” he said.

“We are humans. I also have weaknesses and am trying to overcome them. Skipper and other players are also learning. God also bless you because we are getting opportunities to learn from what you say,” Rizwan said.

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