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City defender Shabir relishing his Pakistan call-up
10:30am Saturday 2nd February 2013 in Skrill Conference North Table & Results By Steve Carley - Midlands Sports Journalist of the Year 2013, @stevecarleyWN
SHABIR Khan might not be getting many minutes for Worcester City at the moment but he is certainly clocking up the air miles.
The defender, who has been loaned to Halesowen Town in recent weeks, has earned his second call-up to the Pak-istan squad this season.
Shabir, who featured for the country of his father’s birth in a FIFA ranking match against Singapore in November, is set to be involved against Nepal and the Maldives later this month.
The 27-year-old flew out to Pakistan capital Lahore yesterday where he was due to meet up with the rest of the squad before travelling to Nepal for a friendly.
Following that, he jets off to the Maldives in the Indian Ocean for another international friendly ahead of his return to England on February 16.
While he will be unavailable for at least the next four City matches, Shabir, who was on the bench against Droylsden last Tuesday, is just looking forward to travelling the world playing the sport he loves.
“It’s an honour to be able to play for Pakistan and it’s a great experience,” he said.
“It’s also another excuse to go and see different parts of the world as well so in that sense I am very fortunate to fly out there. Luckily I have my parents who like to support me wherever I go and they will be following me there as well.”
Pakistan are ranked 189th in the world by FIFA, whereas Nepal are 170th and the Maldives 159th.
Shabir added: “There is a different style of play and it’s a lot less physical compared to the English way of playing.”
Shabir has started five games for Worcester this season, as well as one appearance as a substitute, scoring one goal in the 5-1 victory over Corby Town in August.
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