Kamran eyes comeback as specialist batsman

Karachi: Out of favour wicketkeeper-batsman, Kamran Akmal is eyeing a comeback to Pakistan cricket team as a specialist batsman.

The keeper was omitted for the one-day series in the West Indies after a disappointing time behind the stumps in the World Cup.

Since the Sydney test held in January, 2010, Kamran has found himself omitted from the one-day and test squads several times but always made a comeback.

"If Pakistan can find a better wicketkeeper than me then I will try to make a comeback as a specialist batsman because batting is something I enjoy a lot and I can bat at any position," Kamran said.

Kamran, who has six Test and five centuries in one-day internationals, said he was working hard on his keeping and batting as he was desperate to make a comeback to the national team.

"I want to serve my country in whatever role the selectors see for me in the side," he said.

Last year after constantly being overlooked for the series against South Africa and the tests in New Zealand, he was recalled for the World Cup after being cleared by the integrity committee of the board.

Kamran, who has played 53 tests and 137 one-day internationals, said he was not deterred by reports that the selectors were also going to drop him for the tests in the West Indies.

The selectors have sent Mohammad Salman to the West Indies for the one-day series while Adnan Akmal the younger brother of Kamran is expected to be called up for the two tests.

"It is true I have had some bad matches in recent months but my performances should be viewed on overall basis," Kamran added.

The senior player complained that critics and some former players tended to pick on his bad matches but didn`t discuss his overall performances behind the stumps and as a batsman.

"Overall my performance as a wicket-keeper has been fine and I`ve one of the highest dismissals among all the wicket-keepers who have played for Pakistan.

"I am the only Pakistan wicket-keeper who has over 400 dismissals across all the formats of the game," said Kamran who has 412 victims in Tests, ODIs and Twenty20s.

He admitted that his performance against New Zealand in the world cup when he dropped two catches in one over haunted him even now.

"And some people don`t want me to forget it. The day seemed to be cursed. People just criticize and forget my past performances. I also love my team and I`m the one who suffers the most because of the missed chances.

"They mention my performance against New Zealand but nobody praises my fine show against Australia," he added.

Kamran said he had no intentions of calling it a day from international cricket and would continue to fight to reclaim is place in the national squad.

"I am not going to let any criticism affect my morale and I know I have the capability to make a comeback to the national team soon," Kamran said.

"I have had a tough time in recent months because of many issues. But now I have resumed my training and I will try to make a comeback on pure performance basis," he said.

Kamran said he was focusing hard on his keeping skills in training to plug his weak areas.

"I know they dropped me because they are not satisfied with my keeping performance that is okay with me and I have no issues with that. My job is to work on my skills and just perform once again," he said.

Kamran added that due to the lack of domestic tournaments, he will continue playing club cricket and might also feature in the Sri Lanka Twenty20 League later this summer.