England newcomer Ajmal Shahzad has already experienced the ups and downs of life as an international cricketer and is keen to prove he belongs at that level.
The Yorkshire all-rounder, selected by his country for the first time for the trips to the UAE and Bangladesh, was handed his debut in the second Twenty20 game with Pakistan in Dubai last week, taking two quick wickets but was then hit for 17 in the penultimate over, Abdul Razzaq taking his side to victory with two huge sixes. He kept his place for the 112-run win over a Bangladesh Cricket Board XI in Fatullah on Tuesday and was expected to remain in the side for the second game against the BCB this morning.
Reflecting on his start to life with England, Shahzad said: "It's a step up, I noticed that as soon as we got here. It's a new thing for me, a massive eye opener. I got my first game out of the way and the first few overs went well for me.
"When I got the two wickets I thought 'This is a bit too easy, it's going to get more difficult'. Then at the end... well, Razzaq is one of the best hitters in the world and he smashed me miles. I just want to play my next game now so I can prove to any doubters that I'm up for the step up and I'm ready for it."Reuse content