'Sarfaraz Ahmed will be first choice in T20Is, Mohammad Rizwan in Tests'

Web Desk
Cricketer Sarfaraz Ahmed. Photo: AFP

Cricket expert Rashid Latif believes returning wicketkeeper Sarfaraz Ahmed will be the first choice in the T20I format against England whereas incumbent Mohammad Rizwan will continue to be the main man in Tests, Cricket Pakistan reported.

Latif reasoned that while wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Rizwan was the top choice for red-ball cricket, Sarfaraz fared better in the shortest format, especially in the Pakistan Super League 2020 where Rizwan did not even get much game time.

"Sarfaraz will be Pakistan’s first choice wicketkeeper in T20Is and second choice in Tests. Rizwan’s performances in Test matches have been really good so far. So I don’t think Sarfaraz will be preferred over Rizwan in Test cricket," he said. 

READ: Sarfaraz Ahmed eyes national return with 'stellar performance' in England

"The reason for taking Sarfaraz along is because they had to pick a bigger squad as the team will be in quarantine initially due to the pandemic."

It is pertinent to mention that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has announced a 29-man squad for the side's tour consisting of three Tests and three ODIs. Sarfaraz, the last all-format captain of the national team, was named as a backup to Rizwan. 

While Latif was optimistic of Sarfaraz's return, he believed that the latter would find it difficult to be benched throughout the Test series and said that the PCB should have allowed the wicketkeeper-batsman to join prior to the T20I series.   

"It will be a difficult challenge for Sarfaraz to sit on the bench after leading Pakistan for three to four years and winning titles like Champions Trophy for the country. However, it is not impossible and I expect him to fight and overcome this tough task," he said.

"Sarfaraz could have gone a little late as well. He could have travelled during the middle of the Test series. Maybe PCB was not able to plan it properly. Since there is a chartered flight being sent by ECB, the board thought of sending everyone together. Sarfaraz didn’t have to go together as he is a very big name of Pakistan cricket as a captain and leader," he said.

Pakistan vs England: 'Sarfaraz Ahmed will be first choice in T20Is, Mohamma