April 23, 2003

Training camp begins at Gaddafi Stadium


The training camp for next month's triangular one-day competition in Sri Lanka began at the Gaddafi Stadium on Wednesday morning. Except for four PIA cricketers (Faisal Iqbal, Umar Gul, Yasir Hameed and Shoaib Malik), who are in Karachi in connection with a reception being hosted by the MD PIA to acknowledge their achievements in the season, all the 17 boys took active part.

Pakistan captain Rashid Latif, coach Javed Miandad and manager Haroon Rashid supervised the camp that was divided into two sessions. The Chairman of Selectors Aamer Sohail and members of the panel - Shafiq Ahmed, Shoaib Mohammad and Farrukh Zaman - also watched the action.

The boys assembled at the ground at 8.30am and underwent physical training session that lasted nearly two hours. After a break of 30 minutes, the boys went to the nets where they stayed till 1.45pm. The batsmen batted with partners with the objective being to learn the art of rotating the strike and create an understanding.

"Although we won the Sharjah Cup but we are aware of the areas that need attention and improvement. The objective in the coming week or so is to create an understanding and develop an atmosphere where the players are gelled together and focused on the assignment in hand," Pakistan captain Rashid Latif said.

He said he was pleased with the commitment shown by the players on the opening day. "I must admit that after a long time I have seen the boys coming (for the training camp) fit and hungry for cricket. The determination to do well and take Pakistan cricket back to its days of glory is visible."

"But I would again repeat that we are in a rebuilding phase and the priority is to identify the potential 15 to 18 players and blend them into a winning combination," Rashid said.

The training camp will continue till May 1 while the team will leave for Colombo from Karachi on May 4. The tournament, to be played on double league basis with New Zealand as the third team, will commence from May 10. Pakistan will play a double header against Sri Lanka and New Zealand at Dambulla on May 10 and 11.

Samiul Hasan
General Manager - Media
Mobile + 92 300 8424 389
23 April 2003