Karachi: Pakistan’s current and emerging cricketers have praised online sessions with former Pakistan greats which were organized by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) in order to help them remain focused and make optimum use of their time in the wake of COVID-19 lockdown.
A total of 45 current and emerging players took part in the lectures. The lectures started on 27 April and lasted two weeks. The list of cricketers who delivered the lectures included Javed Miandad, Wasim Akram, Rashid Latif, Mushtaq Ahmed, Mohammad Yousuf, Moin Khan, Younus Khan, and Shoaib Akhtar.
Pakistan T20I captain Babar Azam termed the sessions as rewarding, wonderful which have helped him in increasing the confidence.
“From the start of my career, I have tried to model my game and seek inspiration from Mohammad Yousuf and Younus Khan,” he said.
“Listening to them has further increased my confidence and I can’t wait to put in practice the tips they gave during the lectures. If the lockdown prevails for long, I would strive to stay in contact with these players and seek their guidance on a long term basis,” he added.
Former Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed has considered himself fortunate to live in a city like Karachi which has produced some great wicketkeepers.
“I consider myself fortunate to belong to a city that is famous for producing top-notch wicketkeepers, including Rashid and Moin. Since I also live in Karachi, I keep interacting with both from time to time yet each and every session with these greats provides some valuable lessons and these lectures were no different,” he said.
Leg-spinner Yasir Shah heaped praise for Mushtaq Ahmed who has helped him a lot during his career. “Mushtaq Ahmed has always been a supporter of mine especially in tough situations and during bad patches,” Yasir said.
“His lecture was very useful for me as I received some invaluable insights on English conditions based on Mushtaq’s rich experience of playing and coaching in England,” he added.
“These lectures were very useful for me as I learned a lot about various aspects of the game, including both skill and the mental side. I consider myself fortunate to have been a part of Wasim Akram’s online session,” Pakistan’s emerging pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi said.
Pakistan’s head coach-cum-chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq thanked all the greats for their lectures in these uncertain times
“Life and cricketing experiences shared by the likes of Javed Miandad, Wasim Akram, Mushtaq Ahmed and Younus Khan will encourage the players. I also found the sessions very rewarding as a student of the game,” he said.
“The greats spoke about various productive ways of spending the time in isolation while giving important tips for the tour of England including advice for mental strengthening of the players,” he added.