Islamabad United owner Ali Naqvi believes that the fourth edition of Pakistan Super League (PSL) will be more competitive than the previous editions.
Despite being the defending champions of PSL, United are not willing to take any team for granted and are keen on carving out an adequate strategy to outfox their opponents.
“The league will be even more competitive next year and we can’t take any team for granted thinking that we are the defending champions,” said Naqvi while talking in an exclusive interview with Cricket Pakistan. “We will adopt a strategy in accordance with every game and hopefully put up a good show.”
Naqvi was also satisfied with the team’s combination and new picks during the draft in Islamabad on November 20.
“The overall team balance is quite good,” he said. “We had quite a few retentions from previous seasons and were looking to fill up spots that were left such as backup wicketkeeper and emerging players.”
Speaking about the departure of their captain from previous editions Misbahul Haq, he said: “We will give Misbah his due respect despite him being not a part of the side anymore. He is a great player with tons of experience under his belt which is why we respect his decision.”
He also confirmed that United are yet to take a final decision on who will be the captain of the side in the next edition.
“We have not taken a final decision regarding who will captain the side,” he said. “We wanted to first get through the draft and formulate our squad before naming our captain.”
Responding to criticism about lack of activities during the off-season, Naqvi said that that their focus is on winning the league and giving quality players to Pakistan.
“Our objective is to win the championship and to give quality cricketers to Pakistan,” he said. “We have won PSL twice and currently seven of our players are part of the national side which means that we our fulfilling our objectives. We are not concerned about what others think about us.”
He added: “Our approach is different as compared other franchises. We are more focused on picking up players from domestic cricket, rather than holding talent hunt campaigns, and grooming them through PSL and so far we have been successful in that.”
Sharing his thoughts about holding entire PSL in Pakistan, he said that before we reach that stage it is important to ensure that proper infrastructure is in place to cater for the requirements of the game.
“There is no doubt that PSL matches in Pakistan are a great sight for everyone. Its Pakistan’s league which is why there should be matches on home soil as well,” he said. “Before holding the entire PSL in Pakistan,