'Out of favour' Junaid Khan eyes Pak return

| Updated: Dec 27, 2016 22:59 IST

Karachi [Pakistan], Dec.27 (ANI): Fresh from his brilliant performance in the recent edition of the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL), Pakistan's out-of-favour pacer Junaid Khan has insisted that he has regained his lost confidence and rhythm and is now eyeing a return to the national ODI squad. The 27-year-old, who was discarded for the 2016 tour of England when most pundits expected him to feature in the high-profile series, did not wallow in self-pity and instead focused on improving his skills and put them to the test for Khulna Titans in the 2016 edition of the BPL. In fourteen matches, the left-arm pacer has picked up 20 wickets and emerged as the second highest wicket-taker behind Dwayne Bravo. Talking about his BPL performance, Junaid said he was satisfied with the way he bowled, adding that he had gained all the qualities that are the key of a fast bowler. "Its not just about taking wickets in BPL, I'm happier about the way I'm able to bowl. Most importantly, my rhythm and confidence are back and those are key for a fast bowler," the Dawn quoted Junaid as saying. Junaid, who played his last match for Pakistan in the Test series against Sri Lanka in June 2015, also said that although he felt disappointed when he was discarded from the England tour, he never made claims that he was considering playing for England instead of his home country. "I was in England when I heard about the news and denied the false claims that I had said I'd like to play for India and not Pakistan via a tweet. I always want to represent my country but was disappointed when dropped from the team as I had been regular members for a few years," he added. The Pakistan player further said he is looking forward to perform and satisfy national selectors in the ongoing National domestic One-Day cup. Junaid revealed his target is to represent the country in the Twenty20 and One-Day formats in the upcoming series against Australia beginning on January 13 at the Gabba. "I really want to become a regular member of the Pakistan line-up and it will be great if I am selected for the Australian ODI series as the wickets there will provide more assistance to fast bowlers like me with some swing and good bounce," Junaid said. Junaid, who made his international debut in early 2011, has played 83 international games so far and is still hoping for a role in the Pakistan cricket's future teams.(ANI)