KARACHI: The Pakistan women’s team is departing for Doha on Wednesday to compete in back-to-back One-Day International (ODI) and Twenty20 tournaments hoping to get the best preparations for the upcoming ICC World Twenty20.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is hosting the two tournaments, in what will be the first exposure for international women cricketers in Qatar.
The triangular ODI tournament, featuring South Africa and Ireland, will be played from January 10-17 and will be followed by the triangular T20 series from January 19-24.
The Pakistan team started preparations on December 23 at the South End Club in Karachi. The women cricketers also played several practice matches against various men’s outfits during the camp.
‘Team is well prepared’
The national women’s team coach Mohtashem Rasheed was satisfied with their preparations, saying his team was targeting titles in both tournaments.
“These events are vital ahead of the World Twenty20,” Rasheed told The Express Tribune.
“We are well prepared and leaving with an aim to win the titles. A title triumph will be a huge motivation for the players before the World T20.
“The PCB has taken a very good step by arranging these tournaments before an important competition.”
The coach also hoped that his team would give a better performance against South Africa.
“We have never lost against Ireland but the team has managed to earn just one win against South Africa. We are also eyeing to improve our record against them.”
Events to help shape solid squad, says captain Sana
Team captain Sana Mir said the Doha trip will help the team management form a formidable squad for the World T20.
“This is a great opportunity for the players to show their mettle,” said the skipper.
“The selection for World T20 will be based on their performance in upcoming tournaments and the players must realise the importance of this assignment.”
The seasoned all-rounder relished the chance to play practice matches at the National Stadium Karachi under lights.
“For the first time we got the opportunity of playing under lights at the National Stadium and that will help us since all the matches there will be day-night affairs.”
Meanwhile, vice-captain Bismah Maroof was targeting to play an important role for her team.
“My aim would be to perform at my best and ensure that Pakistan wins due to my efforts,” she said.