“We have been through hell emotionally” – Dean Jones

Dean Jones

Islamabad United head coach Dean Jones said that his side has “been through hell” after two of its key players, Sharjeel Khan and Khalid Latif, have been provisionally suspended by the PCB as a part of the ongoing investigation and sent back home.

Three of the other Islamabad United players – Mohammad Irfan, Shahzaib Hassan and Zulfiqar Babar – were also questioned the Anti-Corruption Unit as a part of the investigation, but were allowed to play the second season of the Pakistan Super League (PSL).

“Emotionally and physically the team has been through hell,” Jones said after the match on Saturday.

“All in all, we’re trying to prepare these guys coming into the match and it’s not been the best preparation, I’ll be honest with that. The boys came here, they wanted to get out here and have some fun and play. Unfortunately it hasn’t worked that way.

“We’ve seen a bit of that over the past 24 hours to loosen things up. From our owners to Wasim and our senior players, it’s been a bit of a tough time but now we’ll regroup and we’ll get together and move on.

“Can I just say well done to the PCB? I think they have handled everything over the past 48 hours really well. We’re here to keep this great game clean and we’ll do everything we can to do that.”

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The former Australian batsman also praised Misbah-ul-Haq for being a calming figure in the side.

“Misbah’s always calm, cool and collected,” he said. “He doesn’t give a lot of emotion away, that’s the good thing about him as not many people see the humorous side of him.” Jones said.

Islamabad United have also lost their second game of the PSL today (February 12) to Lahore Qalandar, as they hunted down their target of 159 in just 18.2 overs.

“When you lose, it’s always difficult,” Jones said. “It’s our first loss in seven games if you want to look back from last year to now. It was a big game for us in a lot of ways but it’s one and one [a victory and a loss in 2017], and we are in a position a lot of teams would want to be in.

“The good thing is we’ve got a four-day spell now before our next game, when we go down to Sharjah. We’ll regroup, go out and enjoy each other’s company like we always do. It’s my job as a coach to remind them that we failed a bit today but we’re in a pretty good position.”

Read what happened in the PSL so far: Match 1 (Zalmi vs United)| Match 2 (Gladiators vs Qalandars)| Match 3 (Kings vs Zalmi)| Match 4 (United vs Qalandars)| Match 5(Gladiators vs Kings)

Featured Photo Credit: pravin indrekar/Flickr