Islamabad, Apr.24 (ANI): Controversial Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar might have been rejected as a spent force by critics, but the bowler is determined to make a come back in the national squad and is eyeing the forthcoming Test series against England for a return to the international stage, according to his domestic teammate Saeed Anwar Jr.
Anwar , who plays for Khan Research Laboratories (KRL) along with Akhtar, said the "Rawalpindi Express" has been training hard for the past few months and has improved his fitness level to a great extent.
"I know it's fashionable to say Shoaib Akhtar is finished and that he's no longer able to play professional cricket but I disagree. I've never seen Shoaib working as hard as he has been these past few months, his fitness is greatly improved and he's totally focused on making a come back," Anwar Jr. told Cricistan.com.
He said Akhtar's recent six-wicket haul in a domestic match shows that he has recovered from his knee operation and is raring to go, adding that the 34-year old pacer is targeting the forthcoming England tour for a comeback.
"England holds a lot of happy memories for Shoaib and it's the upcoming tour of England that he's targeting for his return to the international fold," Anwar Jr. said.
Chief selector Mohsin Khan has already made it clear that if Akhtar continues to perform at the domestic level he could considered for recall.
"The best part about Shoaib and his latest comeback bid is that he appears to be really positive. He is really disciplined on the field. He is working hard and appears to be really focused. I'm getting really good vibes from him," Khan had said earlier.
When asked whether the selection committee would consider Akhtar's name if he is declared fully fit, Khan said he would love to have a 'match-winner' like him back in the Pakistan team provided he continues to bowl well and prove his fitness. (ANI)