Younis up for West Indies challenge
DUBAI: Senior Pakistan batsman Younis Khan said he looks forward to return to the team for the second Test starting in Abu Dhabi from Friday, hoping the team take an unbeatable lead in the three-match series.
The 38-year-old missed the first Test due to his recovery from dengue fever but is sure to replace Babar Azam in the eleven.
Younis said after winning the first Test Pakistan will have to show more responsibility.
“I think it happens when you win the first Test your responsibility increases and you need to keep the momentum,” said Younis.
“It’s important that you win one match and then don’t get relaxed, so it will be important to keep the momentum which we have started in England with the Oval win. When we play the next series it helps so when you became number one and then two so you have to keep that consistentcy and we have to prove that we are better and desreved to be number one.”
Younis said he watched the first Test excitedly.
“I am very happy the way Pakistan won the Test, the way Azhar Ali scored a triple hundred and joined that elite group as there are not many from Pakistan,” said Younis.
“I was watching the match and was very excited when on the last day there were ups and downs. The way West Indies fought and Darren Bravo scored that fighting hundred so its pleasing when youngsters play like this. For me every match is important and I always want to do wonders for my country.”
Pakistan achieved a narrow 56-run win in Dubai after thwarting West Indies who made 289 with Bravo knocking a fighting 116.
Asked if he targets 10,000 Test runs, with 544 runs needed, Younis said it would be a good milestone to achieve.
“I have said every match is very important for. I never go after records, its my wish to be in that elite group of 10,000 runs because there is no Pakistani in that group. I pray to Allah that I get those runs quickly so that one Pakistani comes in that group,” said Younis.
Younis hoped a settled Test side give a good account of itself in the two Tests in New Zealand next month followed by three in Australia.
“If you look at our Test team it looks a settled unit. People now talk about us as a Test team, people who used to stay away from Tests are now coming back,” said Younis.
“The way Pakistan played in England and the way we are playing here so it will be important for us to keep that good work. We have a good chance to play in NZ and Australia and win there and if I am with a team which wins in NZ and Australia and it will be a big achievement and its like a dream come true.”
Younis reckons Pakistan as top two in rankings, deserves more Tests.
“If you look there are more T20s and ODIs but if you ask a true follower they like Tests when you don’t play Tests its not good,” said Younis.
“People want to know how many Test you have played. Its followed (Tests), we deserve more tests and do wonders in that. Its my wish to play a Test in Pakistan again, play against India and against top teams,” said Younis.
Younis hoped India resumes ties with Pakistan, especially Tests.
“Look India and Pakistan are two giants of cricket so whatever be the situation between the two nations it must be forgotten and cricket should be played, millions of people follow that and peole follow both the teams, they should play and play regularly.
“I have said this before and say this again that we must keep politics and sports separate. Whenever Pakistan plays India cricket gets promoted in the region. Whenever they play, even at neutral venues crowds come in big numbers so It should be played and played regularly.”
Younis said he never dislikes critics, but they motivate him.
“I think all my improvement in cricket has a hand of critics, I take it as positive. I never do it to show to someone. We are human beings and we make mistakes but good people are those who learn from their mistakes.
“When they criticise me I go deep and analyse what wrong I have done. I want to play for my country, for my family and for my fans. May be I don’t get to come and play on these grounds so I enjoy wheatever chance I get.”