New Delhi: Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-haq insisted the entire squad are fully supportive of Mohammad Amir, who is embarking on a comeback to cricket against England. Amir is in line to face England at Lord's next week as he makes his comeback on the ground where he was found guilty of bowling deliberate no-balls in 2010 – leading to a ban and a spell in a young offenders' institute.
The seamer, now 24, impressed when taking four wickets in the three-day match against Somerset this week. After receiving a five-year ban from Test cricket for spot-fixing, paceman Amir is set to make his return at Lord's next week. The controversial 24-year-old had been found guilty of deliberately bowling no-balls in 2010, though he has since impressed in Pakistan's three-day tour match against Somerset.
"Honestly speaking, I don't care about these things. Personally I just focus on what is going on in the middle. As a captain I have to focus on what is going on in the middle, how he performs, how he bowls. That's what we are looking for in terms of Amir and I think he's got the best chance to prove himself in the middle," Misbah said.
"Don't worry about what's happening. There are thousands of spectators saying something – you never listen to them, you just have to focus on what's going on in the middle. [Interruption] That's what Amir will be told. "Obviously. Those are decisions that are out of your control and somebody else decides. More importantly it's the fans – how they react to it. They want him back, they want to see him back playing, so they made the decision. And then it's the regulatory body, the ICC, whoever makes that decision. We are here to support him and everyone wants to see him playing again. So we will support him.
"I think he [Amir] is the same. I have been watching him for the last three or four months and he's been bowling really well, even on the flat tracks, in T20 cricket, in one-day cricket, even in the four-day cricket he played in Pakistan – he's been playing like that. "His pace is there, he's been swinging the ball, he's got all the tricks – how to get the batsmen out and put them under pressure. He is more mature at the moment. He wasn't that mature at that time. He's more mature and that experience and maturity can help him, even to become a better bowler."