October 23, 2002

Ijaz claims he's fit to play

By Our Sports Correspondent

Test discard Ijaz Ahmed said Tuesday thathe was fit enough to command a place in the Pakistan team. Talking to reporters Tuesday, Ijaz said that he has been invited by Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and that he would prove his worth with the bat.

Ijaz, a veteran of 60 Tests and 250 One-day Internationals, claimed that he was still the most suitable batsman for No 3 spot. He said that both Inzamam-ul-Haq and Yousuf Youhana liked to bat in the middle-order.

ijaz, who skipped domestic's first-class tournaments last season, boasted that no other batsman could perform more impressively at the crucial No 3 position than him.

In reply to a query, he said that he was ready to perform in domestic season but at present no tournament for seniors was being played in the country.

The outspoken batsman questioned PCB's decision to include Saeed Anwar in the team despite the lef-hander's absence from domestic tournaments.

It may be mentioned here that PCB chief Lt Gen Tauqir Zia has announced that every player had to prove his fitness before trying to get a place in the national team.

Ijaz, who last played in the ICC Knock-Out trophy in Bangladesh, said that he was having weight training and net practice regularly.

Ijaz, meanwhile, did not agree with PCB's decision to change the existing slab system to pay the cricketers on seniority basis with the new one, which will be based on performance.

He said that there must be respect for seniority and a senior must have edge over a junior. However, he added, special incentives could be paid to any one who showed talent and performed better than the seniors.