England, West Indies tours ideal preparation for T20 WC: Misbah

Pakistan cricket team head coach Misbah-ul-Haq said the upcoming tours of England and West Indies will provide his team enough practice to prepare well for the ICC T20 World Cup later this year in India.

“I’m taking it (tours to England and West Indies) positively and it’s a great opportunity for me as a coach and for us as a team, which could help us to get better preparation before the World Cup,” Misbah said on Saturday.

Pakistan will play three ODIs and an equal number of T20Is, beginning July 8, in England. The squad will then leave for the Caribbean to play five T20Is, beginning July 27, and two Tests in Kingston, Jamaica from August 12.

“With the T20 World Cup around the corner, we are fortunate to get an opportunity to showcase our skills against the 20-over world cup and 50-over world champions over the next two months. The series against England and West Indies will be a good test case for us to know where we stand before this year’s T20 World Cup,” said Misbah.

Highlighting the concerns and improvement in the team, the former Pakistan skipper said: “The middle-order is one of our major concerns and we have to look at it. We have made improvement in (the) fielding department and I am sure we will overcome our middle-order department before the start of the global event.”

Misbah said the doors for international cricket are “open” for Mohammad Amir, provided he comes out of retirement and produces strong performances.

“I was the captain when Mohammad Amir made his comeback in international cricket. Last year, we took him to England when I was not only the head coach but also the chief selector. He was dropped due to his performances and injuries. Subsequently, he announced his retirement. If he comes out of retirement and performs, then the doors are open for him, like any other player.”