LAHORE - Pakistan cricket chief selector Iqbal Qasim promised to select the team on merit and no player including Shahid Afridi is an automatic choice for the inclusion in the team for India tour.
Till a few months back, Afridi was an automatic selection for Pakistan’s limited-over squad but after his failures in batting, the former Pakistan captain would need to give national selectors a solid reason for his inclusion in the touring party for the short series against arch-rivals India.
Qasim said every player would be selected on performance and merit and if Afridi proved his credentials in the National Twenty20 Cup then he would be picked if failed to deliver then there would be no place for him in the team. “Afridi needs to perform in domestic matches to give the selectors a solid reason for his inclusion in squad for a short series against India,” he said.
The chief selector along with other members of the committee will watch the domestic Twenty20 event to assess and observe the performances of the cricketers and Afridi would be among the players whose performance would come under the microscope during the tournament. “The National Twenty20 Cup will help the selectors to pick the best players up for Pakistan’s eagerly-awaited tour of India,” Qasim said. He said that India series was very crucial and the seniors would be picked over their performance in the National Twenty20 Cup.
The selection committee will announce the team after the conclusion of National Twenty20 and the players having good performances at their credit will get spot in the squad.
Meanwhile, explosive all-rounder Shahid Khan Afridi has vowed to bounce back strongly as he is leading Karachi Dolphins in the upcoming National Twenty20 Championship to be started on December 2 and concludes on 10th, in a bid to regain his form ahead of India tour to get a place in the national squad.
“I am looking forward to the Twenty20 tournament and hope to bat at No 3 or four for my team in a bid to get some time on the crease and I believe Pakistan need me as an all-rounder so I will try my best to regain some batting form ahead of the series against India,” he said.
Afridi, regarded as one of Pakistan’s most successful all-rounders in One-dayer and Twenty20 format of the game has now flopped with the bat and struggling to get form. “It’s very important for me to have some good outings with the bat during the national Twenty20 event. At the moment, I am focusing on my physical training but would undergo some extensive net practice in a bid to get ready for the tournament.”