Intikhab welcomes Shoaib’s return

April 8th, 2009 - 5:57 pm ICT by IANS  

Shoaib Akhtar By Omar Khalid
Karachi, April 8 (IANS) Pakistan coach Intikhab Alam has welcomed the return of Shoaib Akhtar in the Pakistan line-up for the one-day series against Australia in UAE, saying that the pacer will be a useful member.

A former Pakistan captain, Intikhab told IANS Wednesday that Shoaib has proved his fitness and will add more firepower to the team’s pace battery in the April 22-May 7 series to be played in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Shoaib, 33, was dropped from the Pakistan team this January after failing in the first two One-day Internationals against Sri Lanka at home. He was later diagnosed with a knee injury.

Intikhab, who spent a week in UAE to inspect the pitches and playing conditions there, said that he is confident that Pakistan will do well in the series that includes five One-day Internationals a Twenty20 game.

“We have named a very balanced team and with the conditions in UAE suiting us, I’m hopeful that the boys will do well in the series,” he said.

Intikhab said that he is satisfied with the conditions of the wickets in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

“We saw a few matches being played on those wickets and they look very good,” he said.

Pakistan had sent special soil from a place near Sialkot for the pitches made at the Dubai Sports City Stadium that will host two ODIs between Pakistan and Australia and a Twenty20 game during the series.

Intikhab said that good one-day wickets have been prepared for the series.

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