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Sarfaraz Ahmed has denied rumours of a rift between him and fellow Pakistan wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Rizwan.
Rizwan used to be Pakistan’s go-to wicketkeeper-batsman in Test cricket until his performances started to dip.
Sarfaraz, who had been a bench player all that time and waiting for another chance, was given the opportunity to make his comeback during the two-Test series against New Zealand from December 2022 to January 2023.
The 36-year-old former captain made the most of it as he scored 335 runs, which included a century and three fifties, at an average of 83.75.
He kept his place for Pakistan’s two-Test series against Sri Lanka in July 2023, but only managed to make 32 runs at an average of 16.
It should be noted that Sarfaraz was replaced by Rizwan midway through the second Test in Colombo as he was struck on the helmet. Rizwan went on to bat in the match and struck an unbeaten 50.
Even though both of them hold the same role in the Pakistan team, Sarfaraz reiterated that he and Rizwan have a lot of respect for each other.
“There is no hate between me and Rizwan. The hate is just from the people on social media. These people have nothing to do in their life, hence they come to social media and start writing unnecessary things,” he was quoted as saying by Cricket Pakistan.
Following the Sri Lanka Test series, Sarfaraz was not picked for the three-match ODI series against Afghanistan or the Asia Cup.
Rizwan was selected for both series and amassed 90 runs, which included a top score of 67, against Afghanistan at an average of 30.
As for the Asia Cup, the 31-year-old from Peshawar finished with 195 runs in five matches, which included two fifties, at an average of 97.50.
Pakistan kicked off their campaign with a 238-run win over Nepal before sharing one point apiece with India as their match was rained off.
Having qualified for the Super Fours, the men in green went on to thump Bangladesh by seven wickets.
It was from here that everything went wrong for them as they lost to India by 228 runs.
Following this, they still had a chance to get into the Asia Cup final, but they came up short as Sri Lanka beat them by two wickets via the Duckworth–Lewis–Stern method (DLS) method.
Pakistan Squad for 2023 Asia Cup: Babar Azam (capt), Shadab Khan, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Saud Shakeel, Fakhar Zaman, Abdullah Shafique, Imam-ul-Haq, Saud Shakeel, Salman Ali Agha, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Nawaz, Usama Mir, Haris Rauf, Naseem Shah, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Mohammad Haris (wk), Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Shahnawaz Dahani, Zaman Khan.
Travelling reserve: Tayyab Tahir