Let the Sialkot Stallions represent Pakistan

Published: April 20, 2012

Being a blend of energetic young talent and experienced players, the Sialkot Stallions has all the ingredients of a top-flight outfit. PHOTO: APP

A selector once associated with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said that he would not hesitate to select players from even a small town if their performance outshone cricketers from other parts of the country. 

The point that he wanted to make is that quotas should not be set per region and teams should be selected in the best national interest, irrespective of which provinces and cities the players come from.

Nowadays, a lot of effort is being made by the PCB think-tank to form a formidable squad for the ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka. Amid discussions on who should participate and who should lead the side in the biennial tournament, I wondered – in light of the former chief selector’s thoughts – what if we send the Sialkot Stallions, our most successful domestic team in the format, to represent Pakistan?

Though Sialkot has never performed at the international arena before, I found many points favouring the argument.

Unlike the national team, Sialkot has shown consistency since the inception of the shortest format on our domestic circuit in 2004-2005 by winning seven out of 10 National Twenty20 and Super Eight competitions.

Being a blend of energetic young talent and experienced players, the group has all the ingredients of a top-flight outfit. It has a swashbuckling batter, Imran Nazir, who can turn the tide on the opposition single-handedly over and over again. Further, the team possesses impressive talent in Haris Sohail who has shown potential for performing at the international arena in the recent edition of the Super Eight event.

The team’s most experienced all-rounder is Rana Naveedul Hasan, who also is a match-winner. Finally, the team has seasoned campaigner Shoaib Malik as its leader and he has handsome experience of leading the Pakistan national team.

The spin department, with the likes of Test player Abdul Rehman, upcoming left-arm spinner Raza Hasan and an overall decent fielding show make the team a well-balanced one.

The most convincing fact about Sialkot is that it plays as a unit and is never indifferent to its members, a characteristic which the Pakistan team often lacks. These are all traits that the national team could do well to emulate.

Read more by Fawad here.


Fawad Hussain

A reporter for the sports desk of The Express Tribune

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • raja

    Dear by having Good English does not make u a intellectual have u checked the history of this same team Mr Malik admitted on media that he looses the match to get rid of hafeez team Malik is a disgrace he lost the match intentionally and you are purposing him to lead pak shame on U Recommend

  • MAD

    Are you nuts. a domestic team to replace the national one? Recommend

  • Hasan


    And what gives you the right to “personally” attact the writer’s “english” and his “intellect”?Recommend

  • MAD

    If you dont like my comments dont approve them, i hate it when they are edited and I sound stupid.Recommend

  • Rehman

    After Mr Me (Afridi) Fans, Now fans for Mr Dheela (Malik) wants to see him as captain Pakistan side.

    Why recycle the trash why not appoint some one else?Recommend

  • JB

    While the idea of replacing an international team for a domestic one is absurd, Sialkot Stallions SHOULD be a part of the Champions League. No doubt, this team is the best in the domestic scene, the concept of an international team is picking out the best from all domestic teams and having them represent the country. However, maybe owing to my personal bias, I do not regard Shoaib Malik as a good captain; especially after him intentionally (and blatantly) throwing a domestic match. Who is to say he will not do it on the international scene if given a chance? Yes, he was fined and served a ban. But the fear of a repeat stays. The same way we are not willing to trust Salman Butt, Asif and Aamir even after they serve their sentences.Recommend

  • jawad BT

    Valid Point Fawad..

    If the ones we have cant deliver it as a team we should try with the ones who can.. instead of loosing it by all.. Yes its on the Record they have won and delivered no matter what the others say.. I think because cricket is in our blood we cannot afford to believe that smaller teams are playing like a unit then the Senior Team.. and that’s what makes them good..Yes we can have a series of matches of national winner Team with our senior Team.. Then we will be able to see who performs well..Recommend


    there is a huge difference between international and domestic bowlers so you cant send domestic players for such a big event like t20 world cup… They cant handle the pressure too Recommend

  • Ali

    rightly said he vociferously claimed that he throw a match. Fawad plz hve a heartRecommend

  • Qasim

    Sialkot Stallions is a balanced team and they proved it multiple times…Recommend

  • raja


    if some body keep saying that crow is white instead of black what will u call it please research on it he is the main culprit he payed million to PM son for a chance in the international though he failed to perform and gentle men suggests to evaluate him to captain have you seen hong kong sixes he was leader ?Recommend

  • Faisal Shaji

    In order lure international cricket stadiums should be enacted at places such as Hyderabad, Nawabshah or Thatta where there are no issues related to terrorism. It would boost lot of tourism. Locals would offer lot of culture and new hotel industry would be launched. Can Zaka work on this novel idea.

    Matches can also be organised at serene locations such as Defence Stadium Karachi near to the beach. Karachi is place where night weather is always good during entire 12 months. How is that? Recommend

  • http://mobile.twitter.com/zainsattar95 zainy

    haris sohail vs umar akmal
    hasan raza vs umar gul
    abdur rehman vs saeed ajmal
    Shoaib malik vs misbah ul haq

    Naah, im happy sending the pak team in the WCRecommend

  • http://mobile.twitter.com/zainsattar95 zainy

    yes but what can happen is make a team of talented and promising players from the domestic circuit who’ve performed in the t20championship and make them play against the national side.
    Select the best 15. Send them to Sirlanka for the WCRecommend

  • http://supercashfunding.com/legal-funding/ Roman Funding

    The team is every skilled and they have a every good chance of being champs this yearRecommend

  • http://fb.me/kaamran Kamran

    @raja, you seem to be more ignorant of the history. yes malik did lose that match, but as a protest of the unjust scheme that put them out of contention when they were handed a penalty after winning the match against Lahore. It was a bit childish, but I liked his guts & courage to openly protest a wrong decision. He did prove his point by staying unbeaten for the next six years….

    And about the main topic, we really dont need to send the Stallions to represent Pakistan. Instead we can select the world beaters from all the domestic teams. Of course, the major contribution should be from the Sialkot team. Imran Nazir, Raza Hassan, Rana Naved, Haris Sohail and Shoaib Malik are a must-have in the national side…Recommend

  • Rizvi

    I think Imran Nazir should be pick up for national team from Sialkot. I guess writer hails from Sialkot. It is a good pratice for writing an article in a newspaper but nothing else. No solid arguments and no sense to suggest the entire SL team to lead Pakistan. The players like Ahmad Shahazad, Muhammad Hafeez, Saeed Ajmal, Shahid Afridi, Umar Gul, Umar Akmal are more capable to represent the A team. Shoaib Malik has no space to come into the squad. He should join the PPP and Fridous Ashiq Awan will help him to become an MP. He has better scope in politics rather than cricket. He is a good politician and PPP is fit for him.Recommend

  • http://abubakarfarooquipk.webs.com Abubakar Farooqui

    What do you Think about Stallions, IS there any match fixing behind it or is that only a team effort. How can you neglect the winning captain “Shoaib Malik” who won 7 times for Sialkot stallions. You people even don’t know about Malik that when he was captain, Pakistan’s win rate in ODI was 77 and in t20 was 83. Afridi’s win rate was 54 in ODI and 63 in T20s. Shame on everyone who talks against Shoaib Malik without knowing the facts. People like you have forced or Dear Pakistan to never grow up and be a constantly destroying nation.Recommend

  • http://Zulqarking Zulqarnain

    Morons can believe that malik has potential to threat an international team with force of sialkot stallion , exception of imran nazir who has got real guts for pakistan team , while malik should be banned from cricket he is a henpecked husbnd just an indian agent living in pakistan , son of rehman malikRecommend