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Younis eyes extending Pakistan career

Associated Press
Feb 04, 2012 at 08:59pm IST

Dubai: A rejuvenated Younis Khan said on Saturday his Pakistan career can go on for at least four more years if he stays fit and continues to perform.

Khan scored an unbeaten 115 against England on the second day of the third and final Test that has put Pakistan in sight of its first ever clean sweep over England, the top-ranked Test team.

Khan, 34, resumed his international career after being banned for eight months over a dispute with fellow player Mohammad Yousuf.

Younis eyes extending Pakistan career

Younis Khan said his Pakistan career can go on for at least four more years if he stays fit.

Since then he has been a mainstay of Pakistan's middle order along with captain Misbah-ul-Haq, helping the team to avoid defeat in its last seven Test series.

"If I stay fit and my form is going, maybe I play for another four to six years," Khan said after hitting 11 fours and a six in his 20th century.

Khan said that young batsmen like Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq, who are batting around him and Misbah, have given Pakistan an ideal middle order batting lineup.

Ali and Shafiq's 88-run stand in the second innings of the second Test paved the way for Pakistan's 72-run win against England at Abu Dhabi last week.

Little-known Ali has again come to his team's rescue with his sedate unbeaten knock of 75 off 246 balls after England had reduced Pakistan to 28-2 before lunch. He combined with Khan for what could prove to be a match-winning partnership of 194 runs.

"He has a fantastic technique and plays according to the situation," Khan said of Ali. "The good thing about him is that he always talks with you ... and it all came our way."

Khan said the wicket eased out considerably after the first day when 16 wickets tumbled in the three sessions. No wickets fell in the last two sessions of the second day.

"Wicket is definitely playing easy as compared to what we saw on the first day," he said. "There's a lot of time in this test match, and we had an advantage of that."

Despite a big lead falling within Pakistan's grasp, Khan was wary of England's ability to come back in the match.

"I think they will fightback because they are No. 1 team and have players like (Kevin) Pietersen, (Ian) Bell and (Andrew) Strauss ... they need luck and aggression and they will be through."

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