Veteran all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez has revealed that he is now playing an extra role in a bid to help the Pakistan team for future assignments.
Hafeez, who was named player of the match after scoring brilliant 45 off 36 balls and also bowled an economical spell, while talking to the media after the game, disclosed that Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed has given him the permission to talk to youngsters and groom them for future challenges.
“I’ve been given permission by Sarfraz to talk to the youngsters on the field as the idea is to share experience and the all the guys are responding well,” said Hafeez. “We have a young team and the idea is to give them a message of conviction. Whenever, I am standing next to a youngster, I always tell him that do what your heart tells you do to.”
Hafeez was also glad that his performance was instrumental in the team’s victory in the first T20I.
“First of all I am happy that I helped in Pakistan’s win today [on Wednesday] and my contribution as an all-rounder was a good one,” he said. “This was missing from before so I am very happy to do that job for Pakistan. What I am trying to do is to make sure whatever situation I get, I help my team gain the momentum.”
The 38-year-old also revealed the secret behind his successful return to the national side by saying: “In this comeback, my goal is to play each game as it was my last game for Pakistan.”
Talking about the team’s overall performance in the first T20I against New Zealand, the Peshawar Zalmi all-rounder praised the bowling unit but also admitted the home side was 10 to 15 runs short of their target.
“Today it seems that we were 10-15 runs short but our bowlers did well to restrict the opposition and that is more important,” he said. “As a bowling unit, our confidence is very high. Hasan Ali and Shaheen Shah Afridi bowled well and Faheem also started well.”
The remaining two T20I matches between Pakistan and New Zealand will be played in Dubai on Friday and Sunday. The two teams will also play three Tests and One-Day Internationals (ODI).