Shoaib Malik © AFP
Shoaib Malik © AFP

His side may be having an edge over West Indies in the upcoming three-match T20I series due to home conditions, but Veteran Pakistan all-rounder Shoaib Malik has refused to take the Caribbean side lightly.

Talking after the team’s practice session in preparation at the National Stadium, Malik said that Pakistan would not be complacent against West Indies because the islanders’ new and young players could really spring a surprise in the shortest format of the game.

“I have been playing the Caribbean Premier League for the last 5 to 6 years, so I know their team is really solid. We focus more on the big names but ignore the basic fact that it’s the team combination that wins you games. And they have sent a really well-balanced squad,” the Dawn quoted Malik as saying.

Meanwhile, Malik also heaped praises on his young teammates like Hasan Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Muhammad Nawaz, Shadab Khan and Faheem Ashraf, saying that these players remind him of former Pakistan superstar for their talent and effort.

“I have played with many former players of Pakistan and all these young boys remind me of them in many ways. The selection committee and the team management deserve a lot of credit for sticking with these boys which is why their game is improving with each day,” Malik said.

All-rounder Jason Mohammed has been called in to lead the notably weakened 13-man West Indies national side in the three-match T20I series against Pakistan, beginning April 1 at the Karachi’s National Stadium.

West Indies regular T20I skipper Carlos Brathwaite, who rose to fame after smashing four consecutive sixes off England’s Ben Stokes delivery to seal the 2016 World Twenty20 title, will miss the upcoming T20I series reportedly due to security concerns.

While Marlon Samuels, Denesh Ramdin and Samuel Badree are the most experienced players featuring in the national squad, whereas Jason Holder, Chris Gayle and Devendra Bishoo are omitted from the squad.

It should be noted that only four players of the side, who were in West Indies’ squad for the World Cup qualifiers earlier this month, will head to Pakistan.

Earlier, the Caribbean side’s tour to Pakistan was due to take place in November last year, but adverse weather conditions in Lahore and the West Indies’ major players commitment to the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) became the main reasons behind the postponement.