Former Test captain Javed Miandad has lashed out at the national cricket selectors for leaving out experienced all-rounder Shoaib Malik from the World Cup squad, saying that Pakistan cannot bank mainly on the youngsters to carry them through in the challenging mega event which will be co-hosted by Australia and New Zealand from Feb 15.

“To be a selector you must have a vision and while I agree it’s tough to be on a selection panel anywhere in the world, but it’s even tougher if you are a selector in Pakistan and have to pick 15 for an event like the World Cup,” he said in a statement issued by the International Cricket Council (ICC) on Thursday.

“It’s tough to compare present team with the one we had in 1992. We had loads of experience at the top order in 1992 which I don’t see in our present squad,” said Miandad .

“When you lose your experienced bowlers like Saeed Ajmal and Hafeez for whatever reasons, the first thing which should spring in your mind is to look for an experienced replacement.”

“The selectors say they did consider Malik, but he could not make the final cut,” he said.

“I agree Malik had been out of the national team for quite some time, but he has been playing in league cricket in Australia and has also scored prolifically in the domestic cricket matches. If selectors picked fast bowler Sohail Khan on his recent performance in Pentangular Cup, Malik also deserved to make, at least, one more comeback. Not only as a batsman, but he could have easily filled the void of Hafeez as off-spinner.”

The master batsman also contested the idea of putting too much pressure on young guns like Sarfraz Ahmed in the mega event. “The selectors have named just two specialist openers in Hafeez and Ahmed Shehzad and wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed is among their plans to get promotion as an opening batsman in case any one of the two specialists fails at the top order,” he obseved.

“This will harm Sarfraz more and it’s expecting too much from a batsman who has done wonders for Pakistan in the UAE in recent months down the order. With the field restrictions in the first batting powerplay, no one else but Shahid Afridi should take the responsibility of opening the innings as he can blast sixes over the in-field.”

“I don’t see much depth in our fast bowling either. Junaid Khan is returning after knee injury while Sohail Khan, Ehsan Adil and Wahab Riaz are all yet to prove they could be match-winners,” Miandad pointed out.

“Also, the selectors have picked Yasir Shah on his performances in Test matches. This again I feel is a bit asking too much from the leggie.”—APP

Source Dawn News