x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

Malik to remain Pakistan skipper

Shoaib Malik's two-year tenure as captain of the Pakistan cricket team will be extended, the Pakistan Cricket Board confirm.

The Bangladeshi cricketer Shakib Al Hasan.
The Bangladeshi cricketer Shakib Al Hasan.

Shoaib Malik's two-year tenure as captain of the Pakistan cricket team is set to be extended, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ijaz Butt confirmed. Malik's style of leadership has been criticised by several former players. But Butt has reposed his faith on the all-rounder for the forseeable future. "I believe that he [Malik] has done a good job in recent times."

Malik will lead the team out against Sri Lanka who are due to arrive in February - an exchange the PCB are determined to oversee despite accusations that Sri Lanka are apprehensive about the trip. Sri Lanka had agreed to fill in a gap in the calendar created after India refused to travel to Pakistan for a scheduled series. But scheduling issues threaten to mar the series. The PCB, though, are confident of ironing out any differences. "We will finalise the dates within the next few days," Butt said.

Under the latest itinerary, Sri Lanka will play two Tests, three ODIs and a T20 game in a series starting on Feb 15. The Board of Control for Cricket in India could lose up to $10 million (Dh36.7m) in revenue following the scrapping of the tour of Pakistan, the media reported yesterday. The Indian government refused permission for the team to tour Pakistan due to strained bilateral ties after blaming militants based in that country for the Mumbai attacks that killed 179 people.

"We will know the exact figure after the finance committee meeting, but it should be around $10m," a board official said. The Bangladesh all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan has drawn encouragement from his team's gutsy display in their first Test defeat to Sri Lanka ahead of the second Test which begins in Chittagong today. Shakib, 21, was named the man of the match after claiming five wickets in the first innings and hitting 96 as the hosts chased a daunting victory target of 521.

"There was dissatisfaction for not reaching the hundred and getting the victory," Shakib admitted. "But still the team comes first to me as at one stage it seemed it was possible to achieve the target." New Zealand will host the West Indies in a one-day international at Christchurch today. * PA Sport