Saqlain hoping for England berth

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London, Jan 16 (UNI) Despite being out of the Pakistan squad for the past few years, off-spinner Saqlain Mushtaq still harbours hopes of playing international cricket.

Saqlain, who has a British passport through his marriage, will become eligible to represent England in April as he begins another county season with Surrey.

''If they [England] call me, definitely I'll play," he said.

''I've been discussing with my family and friends and they've all been saying 'Saqqy, if they give you the chance, definitely go for it'.'' ''To be honest, I love my cricket and I want to play at the highest level,'' he added. ''I've been thinking about it because last year the press asked me the question and I said I'm looking after my body and my form at the moment.'' The 29-year-old Saqlain, who has not played international cricket since 2004 after a career threatening knee injury, stated that motivation would not be a problem.

''If England needs you and asks you and you can't play with that passion, that's wrong. [But] If I'm playing for a national team, for a country, I don't want to lose.'' UNI XC AB RK1620

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