Since his return to Pakistan’s ODI team, Fawad Alam has been performing outstandingly well. The left-hander made his comeback this year in the Asia Cup after staying out for almost four years. With his superb performances that included a century in the final of the regional tournament, Fawad has proved that the selectors were wrong in keeping him out of the squad. He has played five ODIs since his return, in which he has averaged 106 runs per innings, with three scores of 50 or more.
We had a chat with Fawad Alam on the eve of Pakistan cricket team’s departure to the UAE for the ‘home series’ against Australia and he spoke about his performance, his future plans and the question regarding his possible return to the Test side.
TNS: How did you manage a successful comeback after sitting out for more than three years, around four years, in fact?
Fawad Alam: I never gave up the hope, I continued to perform well as I knew that the runs I’ve been scoring during the domestic cricket will bring me back to the national team. Hard work always pay back and I really did work hard to make this comeback.
TNS: You have also scored good runs in first-class cricket, the longer format, you must be eyeing a return to the Test squad as well?
FA: To be honest, I am satisfied with what I’ve achieved at the moment, I am not dreaming or demanding that I should get this or I must get this, I am thankful to Almighty Allah for the honour of representing Pakistan. My only aim is to score maximum runs, score as much as I can and play a role in Pakistan’s victory wherever and whenever I am given the opportunity.
TNS: And your performance since your return must be like a dream coming true?
FA: This is up to you to describe the way you want in your words, I always tried to do whatever was possible for me and my priority was to score maximum runs and I am glad that I performed accordingly to what was expected from me. My performance since returning is a result of the hard work I did when I was out of the team.
TNS: How important is the series against Australia for you and other players. Do you think Pakistan can do well against the Aussies in the absence of Michael Clarke and Shane Watson?
FA: Well, Clarke and Watson are two cricketers who have served their country well. Australia will surely miss them, but we shouldn’t be complacent about anything. This is cricket and anything can happen in the one-day format of the game. I am sure Australia will come up with equally good players as their replacements. As far as importance of the series is concerned, I think every series and every match is very important for all the players representing the country and we should make most of them, since they give us a chance to better ourselves ahead of the World Cup.
TNS: What are your specific targets during the series against Australia?
FA: My targets won’t be different from what they are every time I play for my country. I want to score maximum runs and contribute in my team’s success, and as you know the World Cup is a few months away. A good performance against Australia will boost our morale and that’s why we are eager to do well against the former world champions.
TNS: Will playing against Australia and later New Zealand help you prepare yourself for the World Cup?
FA: Yes, both the teams play competitive cricket and any player performing against them will have his confidence boosted. If we manage to win both the series, then it will be a great motivation before the World Cup for us.
TNS: You must be aiming high for the Cricket World Cup? How do you see the road to mega-event in Australia and New Zealand next year?
FA: The World Cup is the biggest event of the cricketing world, where not only your countrymen but the entire world will have eyes on you. Everyone wants to perform big at that level and every team will be coming with the target to win the trophy.
I believe our team has the potential to do well in the tournament, it is about clicking on the given day. If I am given the opportunity, I will try my best to contribute maximum for Pakistan, Insha-Allah.