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Pakistan cricket captain Sarfraz Ahmed is hopeful that his team would perform well in the upcoming Cricket World Cup 2019.

“The World Cup is important for all teams. Our first match is against the West Indies. The first match is always important, so all our preparations are geared towards that match and the tournament. We are trying to iron out our deficiencies during this period,” said Sarfraz, quoted ICC.

“The World Cup is one event in which the world is watching you and everyone is following you. The importance of players is realised during this crunch time. It makes heroes and superstars of players for example Wasim Akram’s performance in 1992 World Cup and MS Dhoni's contributions in 2011 World Cup is well remembered.”

According to the captain, his men are preparing well and Pakistan is developed into a good team. He said that his side is no more the underdogs after their successful campaign at the last ICCs Champions Trophy.

“Pakistan always goes into tournaments as underdogs but I don’t think it will be the same this time because people remember that we have won the Champions Trophy.”

The skipper was of the view that the regular tours to England would prove beneficial for his side during the World Cup, as the team would get used to the conditions easily.

Meanwhile, head coach Mickey Arthur is eagerly waiting to his first World Cup with Pakistan. “We can’t wait for the World Cup. We’ve started our planning, I’m sure, like every international team has. Even though we have got so much cricket from now till the World Cup, before we blink, we are going to be at the World Cup."

"So everything we do at the moment is preparation leading up to the World Cup so that we can hit the tournament fully prepared and ready to go,” he added. Speaking about the Pakistani fan base in England, Arthur said ‘it is a home away from home for us.’

Pakistan would begin their World Cup 2019 campaign against the West Indies on 31 May at Trent Bridge. Meanwhile, the showpiece match of World Cup- Pakistan versus India – will take place at the Old Trafford on 16 June.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2018