Lahore - Former Pakistan wicket-keeper Kamran Akmal has failed to impress head coach Mickey Arthur despite giving consecutive performances during the third edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL).

Kamran hit the only century in the third edition of the Pakistan Super League, also slammed the fastest fifty and remained the top batsmen in the ranking. He also played a blistering knock of 27-ball 77, including PSL’s fastest half-century off 17 balls.

Although praising Akmal’s performance with the bat, Arthur remained unsatisfied with his wicketkeeper skills behind the stumps. “Akmal played very well but to play international cricket, you’ve got to do well in three different disciplines. He has batted outstandingly and is a really good batsman. But the same thing as last time, where does he field? Sarfraz is the keeper. He was poor in the field in West Indies and I’m not sure too much has changed,” said Arthur during the post-match press conference.

The national team head coach, who is also Karachi Kings coach, said that his side missed the services of skipper Imad Wasim and star all-rounder Shahid Afridi, who were both injured and didn’t participate in the second eliminator. “I think we were ravaged by injuries. The injuries to Afridi and Imad are massive.

“When we sat down and made plans, we picked them to control the middle over and for Imad to bowl a couple of overs in the powerplay. So we lost two massive international players and that scuppered our plans a bit,” he added.

Meanwhile, Peshawar Zalmi opening batsman Kamran Akmal has said that the credit goes to the entire team for setting up the final against Islamabad United at Karachi on Sunday. He said the team and the captain was very motivating in qualifying for the final. "The match against Karachi Kings was a do-and-die situation for us and thank God, we did it," he said.

Zalmi’s stylish opening batsman said that the team wanted to put up a good total on the scoreboard as the boundary was a bit small. "The credit goes to the entire team and Andre Fletcher with whom I patnershiped in putting up a good total. No team can say it has won the match without the last ball being bowled,” he said and added: “At one moment, it seemed that Karachi Kings will be able to chase the target but we are happy that our team won the game.”

Kamran said it wasn't easy to defend the total but our bowlers bowled very well in the match. "This match and the last three games were just like a final for us. It is my parents and family's prayers due to which I achieved such a feat and I keen to continue winning such feats at national and international level.”




Azhar Khan