Qalandars captain banking on support of Hafeez, Butt

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Lahore Qalandars captain Sohail Akhtar is banking on the support of experienced campaigners Salman Butt and Mohammad Hafeez, ahead of the upcoming edition of Habib Bank Limited (HBL) Pakistan Super League (PSL).

While talking to Cricket Pakistan in an exclusive interview, Akhtar spoke about the duo’s presence in the Qalandars camp.

“I’m lucky to have the support of Mohammad Hafeez and Salman Butt because of the experience they bring to the table, while playing for Pakistan, and I’m hopeful that I will have their backing in the future as well,” said Akhtar.

Akhtar, who will be Qalandars’ new captain in the upcoming HBL PSL, is not bothered by the pressure which comes with the role.

“I’m honoured to lead this amazing franchise and there is no pressure on me in this regard,” he said. “I have been groomed for this role over the past three years and I also led the team during the Abu Dhabi Cup and the series we played in Australia.”

The all-rounder also heaped praise on pacer Haris Rauf after his stellar performances in the recently concluded Big Bash League (BBL).

“Haris Rauf is a quality bowler and he is coming into PSL on the back of some brilliant performances in BBL which is why are expecting him to come good in PSL as well this year,” he said.

Meanwhile Qalandars’ Head Coach Aaqib Javed is confident that his team will banish their past woes and put up a good show in the fifth edition of HBL PSL.

“Our performances have been disappointing over the past seasons but hopefully we can turn things around this year,” he said. “Given how we have fared, I have faced criticism which is fair because I’m the coach but having said that I’m trying my best to changes the fortunes of the side and will continue doing the same this season as well.”

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