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Rehman eyeing all-rounder's slot

Source: PTI
November 05, 2007 11:35 IST

Pakistan's Abdur Rehman has set his eyes on an all-rounder's slot to become a regular feature in the national team. He believes that left-arm spin is not as saleable an art as any other cricketing skill and is focussing on improving his batting.

"I try to bowl to my potential and have also started batting a little bit. I am trying to perform with the bat as well to become an all rounder," said Rehman.

The 27-year-old spinner, who made his Test debut in last month's Test series against South Africa, scalped 11 wickets to emerge as the highest wicket-taker for the home side during the two matches.

He also has nine wickets to his credit in as many one-day internationals.

Despite his impressive feats of grabbing five and six-wicket hauls in back-to-back matches against South Africa during his under-19 days, Rehman got limited opportunities in the international circuit due to abundance of spinners in the form of all-rounders like current captain Shoaib Malik and Shahid Afridi.

"We have Afridi, who helps me a lot. My captain also supports me. There are other seniors also who do help me," said the bowler who is on his third visit to India.

Despite his exemplary success with the ball, Rehman said his only aim is to contain the batsmen.

"My only aim is to contain batsmen and stop the flow of runs. I do not go after wickets instead I keep correct line and length and in the process also get success," he said.

On the new ball change rule in ODIs, Rehman said it's effect would depend on the nature of the pitch.

The current ODI series against India is expected to be played in front of packed stadiums but Rehman said crowd behaviour does not bother him much when he plays.

"I simply concentrate on cricket and do not listen to the crowd. They are their to clap at whatever you do," he said.

His 26-year-old teammate Rao Iftikhar Anjum said it is important to have variation in pace in modern day cricket as the players are constantly being followed by the opposition teams.

"Variation is very important today as you are being studied always," he said.

On his own performance, Iftikhar said he is satisfied with his current form.

"I am happy with the way I am bowling. My priority is line and length and to contain batsmen."

The pacer said with batsmen dominating the game, it is imperative for the teams to score more than 300 to have any hopes of winning.

"Nowadays 250 is not enough," he said.

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