Veteran Pakistan all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez is well-known for his ability with the bat. Yet, Hafeez is no mug with the ball either with nearly 200 limited-overs wickets at credible economy rates. Even though his bowling action has often come under suspicion in a recent interview with Geo News, he claims that a West Indian batsman found him challenging to face.
It was Brian Lara, who Hafeez mentioned to have found difficulties against his bowling. Brian Lara was arguably one of the greatest batsmen to have ever played the game. The former left-handed batsman holds a host of records when it comes to Test cricket. Even astounding bowlers like Muttiah Muralitharan, Shane Warne, and Wasim Akram didn’t hold back from praising Lara.
The 39-year-old echoed the same words of appreciations for the Prince of Trinidad, saying that as his favourite, Hafeez dismissed him once. Mohammad Hafeez went on to concede that left-handed batsmen faced more tough times than right-handers against him and Lara, being a left-hander himself, was one of them to admit it. The 131-Test veteran was also one of the few, who played spinners exceptionally well.
“Left-handers have always had difficulty facing me. However, I have bowled well to right-handers as well. If you look at my economy rate, it’s the same against both. I dismissed one of my favourite batsmen, Brian Lara, as well. He [Lara] also admitted that he had difficulty batting against me. He was a world class batsman and there are very few batsmen who played spinners as well as Lara.”
Mohammad Hafeez reveals his final goal before retiring:
The Punjab-born player expressed his wish to play the next T20 World Cup before calling time on his career. Mohammad Hafeez played his first T20I in January 2020 since November 2018. It was the captain, Babar Azam, who advocated Hafeez’s and Shoaib Malik’s recall for the T20I series against Bangladesh to solidify their number one spot in the shortest format. However, the men in green lost their ranking to Australia earlier this month after staying at the top for 27 months.
And the 39-year old wants to end his international career with grace and respect. Mohammad Hafeez mentioned that he is doing everything in his power to keep himself fit so that if the tournament gets deferred, he is keeping himself and his performances up to the mark to stay in the reckoning.
“I want to retire from international cricket after playing the next T20 World Cup. I hope I am able to end my career with grace and respect. I am keeping myself fit and my performances have been up to the mark in recent years. So If I am fulfilling all requirements of representing the national side, then I am available for selection, even if the event is shifted to next year.”