Pakistan ended up fifth in the points table in the ongoing World Cup and narrowly missed out on a semi-final berth. New Zealand edged them in the net run-rate as many thought that the Men in Green were unlucky to not make it to the final four. While the fans back home are praising the team for the way they made a comeback, the future of some of the players is uncertain. One of them is Imam-ul-Haq and that is for some strange reasons as his performance have never been a problem.
The left-hander has always been taunted as ‘parchi’ for getting selected due to his relationship with the chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq. Inzamam’s tenure at the helm has officially ended with Pakistan’s exit from the World Cup and the board is currently reviewing the team’s performance since 2016. There have been reports earlier that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is unlikely to continue with him as the chief selector.
When Imam-ul-Haq spoke to the media for the first time since returning from England, he was asked about his future if Inzamam’s contract isn’t renewed. The cricketer was expectedly irked with the question and said, “I don’t care about the pros and cons of my relationship with him [Inzamam, his uncle].”
Such talks hurt
The left-hander blamed the media right away for pulling out such stories time and again and also thanked God for the way he is batting at the moment. Though he didn’t set the stage on fire, Imam-ul-Haq had a decent World Cup scoring 305 runs in eight innings at an average of 38.12 and a strike rate of 76.25. He also went on to say that the talks of being preferred because of the relation with Inzamam hurt always despite doing well for Pakistan.
“This is something that you people, the media, speak about. Our public is innocent and they believe whatever they are told. I believe in Allah. I am playing because he has destined it to be so. But such talk has taught me a lot and made me strong mentally. It does hurt, but I try to take it positively. It is true that even if I perform in ten matches but fail in two, I am criticised.
“But I try not to be bothered and try to win my fans over with my performances. Neither you nor I can say what my future is. It is only Allah who knows. My responsibility is to perform and the rest is on up to the PCB,” the 23-year-old was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.
While Imam-ul-Haq’s place in the team is still not in danger, the opening batsman needs to keep piling on the runs in the near future.
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