'Pakistan team belongs to nation, not to any individual'

PacerMuhammad Asif has said that the Pakistancricket team belongs to the nation and if any player doesn’t want to playalongside us (banned trio) then who knows, those players may not be in the team themselves.

Asif said that the national cricket team belongs to the nation of Pakistan and not to any individual players. “This is not a local village team where some players don’t want others to play. If one or two players don’t want to play alongside us, then who knows, those players may not be in the team themselves in the future,” Pakpassion.net quoted Asif as saying.

Asif said that the players come and go and nobody is an automatic or guaranteedselection. “If Pakistan needs us in the team in future, then we will be picked regardless of what some individual players’ feelings are,” he said.Speaking about the former Pakistan players feel that you (Asif) do notdeserve another chance, Asif said there are a couple of players who are speaking out against me, Muhammad Amir and Salman Butt.

“I have no problems at all with that as it is their opinion. They (former players) aren’t selectors and I don’t think they will influence the selectors as what matters is our performance on the field,” he said.Asif said that there were also a number of other former players who feel wedeserve another chance and I think that opinion among former Pakistan players is probably 70/30 in our favour.

“There are people who are for me and against me. I actually get more energy from people who are against me as I want to show those people what I am still capable of and to prove them wrong,” he said. Talking about his return to international cricket, Asif said that it was tooearly at this stage to be speaking about a return to international cricket.

“My fitness is fine and I weigh exactly what I did five years ago before I was banned. Mentally I am ready for a return to cricket but I have to be realisticand take things one step at a time. I have been given some targets by the Pakistan Cricket Boardregarding fitness levels and they shouldn’t be a problem at all. I have nowstarted training at the National Cricket Academy in Lahore which will be a great help,” Asif said.

“If I perform well then the selectors can pick me, if I don’t perform then the selectors will ignore me,”he said. He added that his target to return to international cricket is the series in England next year.

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