Malik hopes to get back Shoaib and Asif

December 11th, 2008 - 5:28 pm ICT by IANS  

Shoaib AkhtarKarachi, Dec 11 (IANS) Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik believes his team can become a potent force in world cricket with the return of strike bowlers Shoaib Akhtar and Mohammad Asif.Pakistan have been missing the services of both Shoaib and Asif in recent times as they sat out in most of the matches in the last few seasons either due to injury or suspension.

Shoaib is on a comeback trail after settling some issues with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and is recovering from injury problems.

Asif’s return to international cricket remains under a dark cloud considering the fact that he is currently battling against a possible two-year ban after testing positive for banned anabolic steroid nandrolone during the inaugural Indian Premier League (IPL) season in May.

Shoaib, 33, was included in the Pakistan team for a couple of international assignments but he so far has been unable to find the sort of rhythm that once made him the most feared bowler.

However, Malik is confident that both Shoaib and Asif will soon make a comeback.

“Both Shoaib and Asif are determined to come back in the (Pakistan) team and I’m confident that they will,” said Malik. “The two players have been training hard and I’m sure they would be a great asset for Pakistan once they come back,” he stressed.

Malik also praised Shoaib for the hard work he has put in recent weeks.

“I myself train at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Lahore and see Shoaib practicing their daily since seven in the morning. It’s evident that he (Shoaib) is ready to give everything he has to make a successful comeback and that’s a good sign for Pakistan,” he concluded.

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