Tuesday Sep 08, 2020
Second-choice wicketkeeper Sarfaraz Ahmed had reportedly refused to play the third and final T20I against England in Manchester last week and only agreed after being talked into it by head coach Misbah-ul-Haq, batting coach Younis Khan and captain Babar Azam, Geo Super has learnt.
In a stunning revelation, sources privy to the matter have said that the usually reserved Sarfaraz finally ran out of patience when the management decided to play him in the final match of the T20 series after keeping him on the bench for the entire tour.
At this, Sarfaraz had purportedly expressed “deep” reservations and refused to play the match, only to be persuaded to reconsider upon the think tank’s guarantees.
Misbah, when approached by a Geo Super representative at his press conference in Lahore on Monday, contested the development, saying that Sarfaraz had not refused to play but only “expressed his reservations”, which he said was something “I would also have done if I were in his position.”
The head coach further said that "any player can have concerns when given the final match of a tour and that’s what Sarfaraz also had.”
“He had pressure that if things don’t go his way then he could be in trouble,” Misbah said.
However, the former Pakistan captain, who now plays second fiddle to Mohammad Rizwan, was assured that “even if your performance is not the same, you will still remain a part of the team.”
It is pertinent to mention that in the same press conference Misbah had unequivocally declared Rizwan as the number one and Sarfaraz the understudy.