Sahibzada Farhan opens up about Ahmad Shahzad rivalry, Iftikhar's advice

Sahibzada Farhan is ready to bat at any position after being selected in Pakistan’s T20I squad

Sahibzada Farhan opens up about Ahmad Shahzad rivalry, Iftikhar's advice PHOTO: AFP

Sahibzada Farhan, who has been recalled in Pakistan's T20I squad for New Zealand series, reflects on his journey since making his international debut in 2018. 

Despite a limited initial stint, he expresses heightened excitement for his current selection, emphasizing personal growth through four years of domestic cricket.

“I am more excited than the excitement I had at the time of my debut because I believe my chance at that time came earlier than I expected. I wasn’t, maybe, prepared then but now I am mature after grinding in domestic season for four years,” Farhan told a local media outlet.

Notably, Farhan recently showcased his prowess as the leading run-scorer in the National T20 Cup, accumulating an impressive 492 runs. 

Drawing inspiration from his friend Iftikhar Ahmed, he shares the valuable advice received about the challenges of retaining a spot in the national team.

"Iftikhar once told me that being selected for Pakistan isn't a difficult task, but retaining your place is extremely challenging. I now look forward to giving my best and cementing my place in the team permanently," Farhan revealed.

Addressing a social media debate arising during the National T20 Cup, Farhan discusses the friendly competition with Ahmad Shahzad. He expresses admiration for Shahzad's performance and sees their simultaneous success as a positive professional rivalry. 

“I always love to see him [Shahzad] scoring runs, it is a coincidence that whenever he scores, I also [manage to] score there. It is always a competition when people in the same slot as you are also among run, a professional rivalry is a good thing,” he said.

“I’ve worked hard for the last four years to earn this call, and I am sure Shahzad is also working hard and I believe that he will get his chance too,” he added.

While recognizing the tough competition for top-order slot, Farhan asserts his versatility, expressing readiness to bat at any position according to the team's needs.

 “I’ve played at middle order in PSL, I’ve also played at two down positions, and I know how to bat at these positions so I am comfortable playing at any number where the team needs me,” he said.

“I believe that a player should get a proper chance in one or two series but now that competition is so tough that we have to perform even if there’s just one game for us, we have to perform and do well, and that’s what I am aiming to do – grab the opportunity, do well, and cement my place,” he concluded.