Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmad
Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmad takes part in a training session. Image Credit: AFP

Islamabad: Former Test skipper Zaheer Abbas has called on the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to appoint Sarfaraz Ahmed captain of the national side for a long term period, as it would put positive impacts on his as well as the team’s performance.

“I believe that instead of appointing a captain on a series-to-series basis, the board should adopt the policy for appointing for a longer term. The board should have named Sarfaraz as captain at least until next year’s 2020 Twenty20 World Cup,” he said.

The World Cup is scheduled to be held in Australia from October 18 to November 15.

The PCB had retained Sarfaraz as captain while Babar Azam was named his deputy for three ODI and as many Twenty20s against Sri Lanka.

Abbas, who received the Pride of Performance Award in 1971, said Sarfaraz had showed good captaincy skills in the 2019 Cricket World Cup.

“Although Pakistan team failed to qualify for the semi-finals, the players had put up a good show in the extravaganza under Sarfaraz’s captaincy,” he said.

Abbas, who had two stints as captain of the national team in 1981 and 1984, said the PCB should stop doing experiments and must focus on long-term planning.

“Sarfaraz should also improve his individual performance with the bat as to firm his place for the captaincy,” he said.

Abbas, who became ICC president in 2015, also lauded the Sri Lanka team for touring Pakistan. “It was a great achievement of the PCB and now the focus must be in bringing the world’s top teams like Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and England to Pakistan as their one visit here can help revive international cricket in the country once and for all,” he said.

“We have great chances of winning the series but PCB’s focus should be on the next year’s T20 World Cup and players should be included in the squad accordingly.”