Younis eyes T20 comeback
Islamabad - Pakistan's former captain Younis Khan said on Thursday he wanted to move on from bitter troubles this year and rebuild his career, after winning back a place in the national team.
The 32-year-old resolved a long-running battle with Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Wednesday and was immediately picked to play for Pakistan's limited over series against South Africa starting next week.
"I am happy to be back and eager to play for my country," Younis told reporters. "I am available to play in all three forms of the game and it's up to the management to play me whenever they want."
Younis announced his retirement from Twenty20 cricket after leading Pakistan to the World Twenty20 title in England last year and since then, his career has suffered badly.
He was one of seven players banned or fined over disciplinary charges following the team's disastrous tour of Australia, which ended in February.
Except for Mohammad Yousuf, who retired in protest, they all appealed against the bans and fines. A one-man tribunal run by retired judge Irfan Qadir overturned the bans and halved the fines.
Younis's case remained unresolved, however, after the PCB wanted an undertaking from Younus not to repeat the offence in future.
Younis and his lawyer, Ahmed Qayyum, initially refused to comply.
"There was some misunderstanding and I am happy that it is over now, which has helped me focus on my cricket," said Younis.
"I have joined the training camp and am fit to play as soon as I am given the chance. I am eager to do my best for the team."
Younis said he was not in the race for the captaincy any more.
"To play for my country is my only desire," said Younis who stepped down as captain after developing differences with team-mates in November.
"I am not in the race for captaincy."
He pulled out of a tour of New Zealand in December and was not selected for Tests against Australia but returned for the five one-days Down Under.
He has not played international cricket since January, but hopes one good innings can put him back in the groove.
"I have not played cricket for nine or 10 months, but it's just a matter of one good innings and then I will be back in the rhythm," said Younus, who last played for Pakistan in a one-day at Perth in January.
Younis has so far played 63 Tests, scoring 5260 runs. He has also played 202 one-day and 22 Twenty20 internationals for Pakistan.
Pakistan plays two Twenty20, five one-day and two Tests against South Africa in the United Arab Emirates.
Time for the playoffs
As I write this, we’re just a few hours out from our playoff game against the Mumbai Indians.