Farhat looking to cement place
Imran Farhat, the Pakistan batsman, has been around international cricket since 2001 but has never been a regular in the side for too long. In the last 12 years, he has only managed to play 53 ODIs at 32.45 and given the number of his matches he has opened with as many as nine partners.
Farhat's career has often been overshadowed by the fact that his father-in-law is Mohammad Ilyas, a key figure in the PCB over the past decade. "This is the notion I want to clear," Farhat said on sidelines of the training camp at Abbottabad Cricket Stadium. "He [Ilyas] has his own status but I never took advantage of it. I would have been playing cricket for Pakistan even if we weren't associated. It is in front of everyone that whenever I make a comeback it is due to my domestic performances.
"I have been playing my own cricket and nobody is there to help at the pitch where you are on your own. I have my own goals and have always been very committed to my game and I never discuss it with him. If I perform it's good and if I don't, I never worry. Cricket is my bread and butter, and I want to play cricket and kept myself busy with it. Playing international cricket is like a reward against performances in the domestic cricket. The only reason I am in the team at the moment is my performance as I have scored enough runs to win a place."
Farhat is in fluent form at the moment. He marked himself with a triple-century in domestic cricket earlier this year and was recalled to the Test squad for the South Africa tour and retained for the ODIs as well. Since than Farhat has been looking to cement a spot in the top three. "I am much more experienced now and can manage any position and ready to play at any order [between 1 and 3] the team management wants.
"I am more confident than ever and working extremely hard," Farhat said. "I just want to make as much contribution as possible for my team whenever I get selected. However, the snub from national team has never been a frustration for me."
Pakistan had a targeted practice match during their training camp in Abbottabad with Shoaib Malik and Kamran Akmal hitting 92 and 66 respectively. Again, like in last five days, the camp was mainly focused on the batsmen, giving them ample practice before leaving for Scotland ahead of the Champions Trophy.
Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. He tweets here