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Pakistan are set to take on hosts England in first semi-final of ICC Champions Trophy 2017 in Cardiff and Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed in a video uploaded on Pakistan’s official Facebook page, prior to their clash against the Englishmen talked about their progress in the tournament.
“First of all I want to thank almighty for making us register a place in the semi-final and perform well especially after the kind of show we put in the first game. All credit goes to the boys for their performance and comeback after losing the first match and we hope to continue with form in the semi-final as well,” said the Pakistan skipper.
Talking about the team management the wicket-keeper batsman credited them for motivating the players after losing the first game India.
“I would like to credit the management for boosting our moral after the loss against India as well as credit goes to our bowlers as well who bowled really well against South Africa and Sri Lanka.”
When asked about the run-chase against Sri Lanka, Sarfraz did admit that quick fall of wickets pushed them on backfoot but the innings from Amir provided the resistance to their side.
“We started off the chase pretty well but we lost 3-4 quick wickets and faced a collapse. But when Amir came in, I told him that we don’t need to take any pressure of the scoreboard. I want to credit Amir for the kind of support he provided to me,” Ahmed said.
Mentioning about the youngsters, Sarfraz praised the young talent in the Pakistan side.
“This is a very good sign for Pakistan cricket that so many youngsters are coming up with good performances in crucial matches. Moreover, credit goes to Pakistan team as well who have picked up these kind of players and credit to those players who are coming in and performing on a bigger stage,” he said.
“We are really motivated for the semi-final and moreover, we have registered a win against England in Cardiff. I’m hoping to put a good show against them.”
The skipper hailed Fahim and Amir’s knock against Sri Lanka. “After Imad’s dismissal I lost a bit of concentration but Fahim came in and he was batting well before getting out unfortunately. Later when Amir came in, I asked him to concentrate and play ball by ball,” he added.
Talking about the semi-final, Sarfraz suggested that Pakistan are the underdogs and England would be under more pressure of performing well.
“As a coach if your team bounce back and after a loss in the first match, you would be really happy. Yes we are surely underdogs for England game and they are the ones who would be under pressure,” he told.