FORMER Pakistan cricket captain Shahid Afridi has warned his teammates against any complacency as they get ready to take a struggling Zimbabwe starting next week.
Pakistan are expected in the country on August 19 for a full tour against the hosts comprising of two Tests, three one-day internationals (ODI) and two Twenty20 (T20) from August 23 through to September 14.
The star all-rounder told a Pakistan publication, The News that Pakistan cannot afford to take any team lightly as even lowly sides like Zimbabwe can be dangerous on their day especially in shorter formats of the game.
“Zimbabwe may not be highly rated, but we cannot take anything for granted,” said Afridi, who is part of Pakistan’s touring party for ODI and T20 games.
“Pakistan will have to give their best in order to win the series convincingly.”
Afridi agreed that winning against Zimbabwe won’t be a huge success, but he was quick to add that a solid showing in the series would provide a further boost to the team’s morale.
“Our team is on a high after winning in West Indies and it would be good for its morale if we give our best in Zimbabwe as well. Good results there would certainly help us as we have to be ready for tougher teams like South Africa.”
Pakistan will host South Africa and Sri Lanka in back-to-back home series in the United Arab Emirates in October.
Afridi said that the tour of Zimbabwe would provide an excellent opportunity to out-of-form players to regain their confidence. “Some of our players have not been in best form, but they can be back in business in Zimbabwe,” he said.
He also believes that a handful of youngsters included in the Zimbabwe-bound squad will also be able to show their worth against an international team.
Pakistan were expected to start their preparations for the tour of Zimbabwe with a brief training camp yesterday in Lahore.
Zimbabwe, who had initially been scheduled to start camp yesterday are expected to troop in today after a brief break in the aftermath of the demoralising 5-0 ODI series whitewash at the hands of India.