Kamran will perform, says Pak captain

PALLEKELE, Sri Lanka: Pakistan on Sunday quashed fears that the controversy revolving around the Akmal brothers might create negativity in their camp.

Shahid Afridi, the Pakistan captain, told reporters here that there is no negativity among his players and each one of them was looking forward to giving his best in Monday’s (today) World Cup match against Zimbabwe.

Kamran Akmal, the Pakistan wicketkeeper, gave a horror show behind the stumps in Pakistan’s previous game against New Zealand here last Tuesday and was set to be replaced by Umar, his younger brother. But Umar injured his right index finger during training and is now unlikely to keep the wickets for Pakistan.

The finger of suspicion was raised at the Akmals and there were fears that Umar was feigning the injury to ensure that Kamran retains his place in the team.

Afridi admitted that it becomes a bit difficult for the team to stay focused in such situations but was quick to add that it will stay on course to do well in the World Cup.

“It is difficult but if you look at the last four games and we won three games. We are all thinking positively and there nothing negative in the dressing room. We just focusing on day by day and game by game and Inshaallah if we win against Zimbabwe the dressing room atmosphere will be better and positive because winning always gives you confidence,” he stressed.

Afridi backed Kamran to bounce back. “His (Kamran’s) performance in batting hasn’t been bad but yes he is struggling with his keeping,” he said.

“But he is working very hard. It’s been four days (since our last match) and he’s been working hard.

He has our support and confidence. I think he knows the mistakes he has committed and he will try to cover it for sure. I think he will perform.”