IPL 2018: Waqar Younis claims not playing the competition reason behind Pakistan's rise to top of T20 rankings

Waseem Ahmed 02:11 07/04/2018
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Waqar Younis believes Pakistan’s rise to the top of the T20I rankings has something to do with their players not participating in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Pakistan players have not participated in the IPL following the inaugural edition in 2008 owing to tensions between the governments of the two neighbouring countries.

Pakistan tightened their grip on the No1 ICC ranking in T20I cricket with a 3-0 clean sweep of the recent three-match series against the West Indies in Karachi. Waqar, a legend of Pakistan cricket and a former coach, is of the opinion that concentrating on international cricket has benefited Sarfraz Ahmed and his side tremendously.

“The reason why our team is number one in T20Is is because our guys don’t participate in IPL,” Waqar was quoted as saying by the Pakistan media.

Sarfraz Ahmed's men had thrashed the West Indies by 3-0 recently.

Sarfraz Ahmed’s men had thrashed the West Indies by 3-0 recently.

“Because of not playing IPL, our boys are down to earth and they want to play international cricket. When a kid starts to play cricket, he doesn’t do it thinking he will earn millions. Instead, he does that because of his love for cricket,” he added.

“The priority now is IPL where a cricketer can earn $2 million whereas here he will get $25k here (coming to Pakistan). There is a lot of money now in cricket and a few leagues have sprung up but it’s the responsibility of cricket boards to make sure that international cricket does not die out.”

Whether the former Pakistan skipper is correct is a matter of debate but for now Pakistan are flying in limited-overs cricket, especially the T20 format. Meanwhile, the IPL is all set to get underway on Saturday with Mumbai Indians taking on Chennai Super Kings. There are once again, no Pakistan players in the fray for this year’s edition.

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