Shoaib Akhtar far from being match fit: Pak selector

September 17th, 2008 - 5:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Shoaib AkhtarKarachi, Sep 17 (IANS) Shoaib Akhtar’s unimpressive showing for Surrey in a county game earlier this month has failed to convince Pakistan’s selectors that the controversial fast bowler is fully match fit.A national selector told IANS Wednesday that Shoaib hardly proved his fitness in Surrey’s match against Hampshire at the Oval.

“He (Shoaib) doesn’t seem to be match fit,” said a selector who requested anonymity.

“We read newspaper reports about his performance for Surrey and almost all of them said that Shoaib is far from being fit. His figures in the match in which he took just one wicket are also quite unflattering” he added.

Shoaib, 33, has to prove his fitness to be able to considered for national duty. Apart from that, Shoaib also has to pay up a fine of Rs.7 million in order to make a comeback. The Rawalpindi Express last played for Pakistan in the Bangalore Test against India last December.

Shoaib vowed to prove his match fitness in a brief stint for Surrey that began last week. But he took just one wicket in the match and mostly looked a shadow of his previous self though he did bowl a few fast deliveries.

“The Shoaib Akhtar who chugged back into action at the Oval on Tuesday was more Faisalabad Funicular than Rawalpindi Express. The mind was willing but the body reluctant,” wrote the Telegraph about his showing on the opening day of the match.

Shoaib wants to return to the Pakistan squad for next month’s four-nation Twenty20 event in Canada but his twin problems — lack of match fitness and the unpaid fine — threaten to block his international return.

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