Tainted Pakistani opener Salman Butt is eager to make a comeback to the national side in all forms of the game. Butt, who was banned by the ICC in 2010, in relation to the spot-fixing scandal against England in 2010, has been in good form in the ongoing domestic season in Pakistan. In the ongoing National Bank T20 Cup, Butt has been scoring consistently, and feels that he can offer quite a lot in all three formats.
Pakistan currently are in a crisis as none of their openers are able to make their starts count. With flamboyant star Ahmed Shehzad being ignored time and again due to attitude issues, Butt has a realistic chance of making it into the squad. The southpaw, in a chat with ESPN Cricinfo, admitted his eagerness to be back for his national side.
“Tests and ODIs are the two formats I can walk into, but it won’t be difficult for me to chip in with the T20 format as well,” Butt said. “I have the experience. This was my first competitive T20 tournament after six years, and I still managed a decent strike rate of 140 in the last three games. Sometimes it is tough to maintain your strike rate because when you see four batsmen getting out in eight deliveries, you have to hold yourself back.”
Butt admitted that age was just a number and fitness mattered a lot. He sought some inspiration from test skipper Misbah Ul Haq. “A batsman matures in his 30s,” Butt said. “There are very few naturally-gifted players in their 20s. We have Misbah and Younis. If you look at Australia, they bring in their batsman in their late 20s or early 30s. So it’s about fitness. There’s no set of rules that states if you are touching 40, then it’s over. “Misbah has proved to everyone through his dedication and fitness that you can fight on at that age. If you keep working hard, then your body responds in a certain way, so it’s about being committed like Misbah has shown.”
He added that he was over his past, and was just dedicated to his present form. “There are two ways to live: either keeps thinking about the past or look forward and move on. In my best interest, I’ve chosen to move on,” he said. “Obviously I’ve taken the good things from the past and eliminated the bad ones. The difference in me is for people to see. No matter what I say or do, it won’t make much of a difference, but my actions would speak and people can form their opinions based on that,” Butt concluded
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