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“I never refused to play one down,” says Mohammad Rizwan

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Pakistan’s wicketkeeper batter Mohammad Rizwan has denied reports that he refused to move to the one-down position during the T20I series against New Zealand in January.

During an interview with a local news outlet, Rizwan expressed his willingness to adapt to any role for the national team. He is ready to bat at any number, and even ready to relinquish his duties as a wicketkeeper.

“I never refused to play one down. When I was asked, I said I am absolutely available,” said Rizwan.

“I even said that if I am needed for bowling, I am ready for that too, I can even leave my wicket-keeping,” he further added.

The top-order batter also pointed out that he has batted at almost all the batting positions, which reflects his flexibility to bat at any number.

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“If you look at my career so far, in 26 matches, I have gone to bat at numbers 7, 8, and 9. No batsman has gone in at number 9, I have,” he said.

“I cannot say that I will not do this. I was ready before, and I am still ready now.”

For the unversed, young opening batter Saim Ayub was included in the Pakistan team for the New Zealand series, requiring either Mohammad Rizwan or Babar Azam to move down the batting order to accommodate Ayub.

The series saw Rizwan opening with Ayub, while Azam played at number three.

Azam scored three consecutive half-centuries at number three, however, Pakistan lost the series 4-1.

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