Image courtesy of: Zimbio
Legendary Pakistan leg-spinner Mushtaq Ahmed has admitted that he is extremely concerned about spinner Shadab Khan.
Mushtaq feels that Shadab returned too quickly after being diagnosed with hepatitis.
Shadab contracted the illness prior to the World Cup, but still featured in Pakistan’s campaign and took nine wickets in seven matches at an average of 35.55.
During the recent three-match Twenty20 series against Australia, Shadab went wicketless, which added to people’s concerns about his form.
“Shadab Khan’s form is a matter of concern for all well-wishers of Pakistan cricket and that should be the case as he has been a top-performer for Pakistan in the past,” Mushtaq told PakPassion. “He has been taking wickets in the middle of the innings which is a crucial phase in any game but then he fell ill before the 2019 World Cup, and I feel he did not give himself enough time to recuperate and made himself available once again too early for national duties.
“Even at that time, I had stated that he should have not hurried himself back into international cricket as his fitness level wasn’t that good, which in turn affected his bowling as well. Ups and downs come in every player’s life but what the need of the hour as far as Shadab is concerned is for the team management to give him mental support and confidence.
“I recall from my playing days that when I used to get hit around in games, Imran Khan used to tell me to not worry and that I had the capability to win the next game by myself. So, a bowler sometimes just needs confidence from his captain and that is enough to do the job. I believe that we are all guilty of creating doubts in bowlers’ minds just because a few games don’t go according to our expectations. Also, sometimes, a break from cricket is necessary to allow a player to recharge his batteries by being away from the game. So, I would say that I am concerned about Shadab Khan at the moment but I am not worried about his long term future.”