Shoaib rejects rift talk ahead of crucial Australia clash


Shoaib Malik has rejected claims the Pakistan squad are split ahead of a crucial clash with Australia that will decided their World Twenty20 future.

After beating Bangladesh in their opener, Pakistan have suffered successive defeats and a loss to Australia on Friday would end their tournament.

Reports have suggested squabbles inside the Pakistan dressing room are behind their troubles, but Shoaib has played that theory down, insisting previous rifts have not hindered their progress.

"Nobody talked about a rift in our camp in 2009 when we won the World T20," he said.

"Six of us were not talking to each other, we still won.

"When you lose games, all the talk starts."

Pakistan hope to have Mohammad Hafeez fit for the match in Mohali, although the 35-year-old will have a second fitness test on his knee before being made available.

"Hafeez felt uncomfortable with persistent pain persisting and in movement of the right knee, he felt minimal level of stiffness and instability," said team doctor Sohail Saleem.

"He will be tested again [on] Friday before the start of the game to ascertain his fitness to participate in the match against Australia."