Malik ready to guide team to top of cricket rankings

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Lahore, Jan 7 (ANI): Pakistan cricket captain Shoaib Malik has said that he is ready to take the national team to the top of the cricket rankings after his tenure as skipper was renewed for an indefinite period.

The Pakistan Cricket Board last week opted to keep 26-year-old Malik on as captain for the foreseeable future, with PCB chairman Ijaz Butt saying there was "no reason to replace him" when his tenure expired on December 31.

The News quoted Malik as saying that the move had motivated him to take Pakistan to new heights.

"Ever since I took over the team, my aim has been for us to fight and play as a unit, so that remains the prime target, and I aim to take Pakistan to the top place in the world," Malik said.

"I am thankful to the PCB, the PCB chairman for showing faith and confidence in me. I will always try my level best to keep the team on the winning track."

Malik was appointed captain after Pakistan's humiliating first-round exit from the World Cup held in the West Indies in 2007.

Since then, he has led Pakistan in only three Tests, losing two and drawing one. Pakistan did not play a single Test in 2008 after Australia postponed their tour over security fears.

Malik has led Pakistan in 33 One-day Internationals, winning 23 and losing 10.

He led Pakistan to a 3-0 win over the West Indies in their neutral venue series in Abu Dhabi in November last year - a victory that helped convince the sport's governors to extend his captaincy.

Malik's next assignment will be a home series with Sri Lanka who agreed to tour Pakistan after India pulled out of a planned trip in January-February this year. (ANI)

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