Wahab: Team supports ‘little brother’ Amir


Pakistan fast bowler Wahab Riaz says the entire team is protective of young paceman Mohammad Amir, and will be supporting him on what will be a tough tour to England as he returns to the scene of his crime.

Amir was one of three Pakistan players convicted of spot fixing in a Test at Lord's in 2010, and this tour will see Amir return to the Test side, at the same ground, for the first time since a five-year ban.

A number of Pakistan players were notably wary when Amir came back to the short format sides late last year, but Wahab says now everyone is accepting and trusting, and will do what they can to help the 24-year-old.

Wahab told Cricinfo: "Obviously he has struggled a lot. He has learned a lot of things in the past five years, he has become more strong, and he wants to answer everyone with his performances, and that's what he's really looking for.

"As a team, as a squad of 17 plus our team management, all of us are going to support Mohammad Amir. We are all behind him, we are all supporting him, whenever he needs us, however he needs us, we will be around him all the time.

"So he is not the one who is being left alone, he is a part of our family. He is the youngest part of our family, so he is like a kid to us, he's like a brother to us, a son to most of our senior players.

"We are always here for him, we are going to support him, and we will push him up because we know what kind of capability he has in his bowling and how he can perform.

"With all our support and by the help of Allah, he will perform very well and Pakistan will do really good in this tour."

Wahab added that the team would not respond to taunts from England fans during the Tests, but will rather send a smile back and avoid conflict.

He added: "Obviously you cannot say anything to the crowd, people come there to watch the cricket, they have their own right to do whatever – to celebrate, or wish you good luck or wish you bad luck – so that's not in our hands.

"What is in our hands is to go into the ground and have a smile on our faces. We know what our goal is and we know how to achieve our goal, so we have to do that.

"We have to enjoy our cricket, we have to laugh all the time, if anyone says anything, a smile can do everything for them."