Shoaib Malik targets 2020 World T20 as probable swan-song
Shoaib Malik sits at eighth place in Pakistan’s all-time ODI run table with 7015 at an average of 35.07. @Getty

Shoaib Malik, the veteran of 404 international matches for Pakistan, has set his sights on playing two more global ICC events before bowing out of the game.

Speaking to reporters in Lahore on Friday ahead of Pakistan’s departure to the UAE where the Asia Cup runs from September 15 to 28, the veteran allrounder said that the 2020 ICC World T20 in Australia would be his last tournament, fitness and form permitting.

“I have said this before on many occasions that the 2019 50 Over World Cup will be my last World Cup, Inshallah,” said Malik. “My goal is also to play World T20 and end my T20 career after that but that depends on my fitness and will be based on discussions with the PCB as I believe honesty is important as a cricketer. If you feel that another player can come in place of you and play better than he should be given a chance.

“My goal is to play these 2 World Cups but it will depend on my fitness and if I feel that the time has come to take retirement, I will definitely take that option.”

Shoaib, who turned 36 in February, made his international debut in an ODI against West Indies in October 1999 and made his Test debut in August 2001 versus Bangladesh. He has featured in 266 ODIs and 103 Twenty20 internationals. However, in this time he has only featured in one World Cup, the 2007 edition in the West Indies.

Malik sits at eighth place in Pakistan’s all-time ODI run table with 7015 at an average of 35.07, and in July became the second Pakistan cricketer to achieve the double of 7,000 runs and 150 wickets in ODIs. In T20Is, Malik has scored the most runs for Pakistan (2109 at a strike-rate of 122.90) to go with 27 wickets.