Former Pakistan players hail selection of Younis, Malik

May 26th, 2010 - 8:54 pm ICT by IANS  

Shoaib Akhtar Karachi, May 26 (IANS) The inclusion of banned Younis Khan and Shoaib Malik in the preliminary Pakistan squad for the summer’s Asia Cup and England tour, pending their clearance by the arbitrator, has been hailed by former internationals.
However, the appointment of Shahid Afridi as the Test captain received mixed reaction.

While ex-players Abdul Qadir, Iqbal Qasim and Shoaib Muhammad backed Afridi’s appointment, Zaheer Abbas, has expressed reservation over the all-rounder’s selection as captain.

“It’s surprising that the player who has not played a Test since four years has been selected as captain”, said Zaheer, the only batsman to score century of centuries in first-class cricket.

He said the all-rounder is not familiar with Tests and it does not suit his style of batting.

Abdul Qadir, another former Test player and chief selector hailed the appointment of Afridi.

“When I was chief selector I floated the idea to name Afridi skipper for all three versions, it is good to see that my idea has been implemented finally”, Qadir said.

The former leg spinner also expressed satisfaction on inclusion of banned Younis and Malik in the team.

“Both are experienced players and the team will be boosted by their presence”, he said.

In contrast, Iqbal Qasim who is also a former chief selector said Afridi’s selection as captain for all three formats is a good decision by the selectors.

However, the former left-arm spinner said Afridi will have to put extra effort in the Test cricket to prove his mettle.

Qasim also lauded the selectors for including the banned duo of former captains - Younis and Malik.

He said the players have learnt their lessons from the humiliating tour of Australia and have also served punishment for indiscipline in the team.

Shoaib Muhammad, former Pakistan opener and ex-member of the selection committee, said the selectors took the right decision on the captain’s appointment and also by including Younis and Malik in the initial squad.

Pakistan squad:

Openers: Salman Butt, Imran Farhat, Yasir Hameed, Khurram Manzoor, Shahzaib Hassan, Azhar Ali, Azeem Ghumman.

Middle order: Younis Khan, Shoaib Malik, Umar Akmal, Faisal Iqbal, Fawad Alam, Hassan Raza, Asad Shafiq, Umar Amin, Aamir Sajjad, Muhammad Hafeez.

All rounders: Shahid Afridi (captain), Abdul Razzaq, Yasir Arafat.

Fast bowlers: Umar Gul, Shoaib Akhtar, Muhammad Asif, Muhammad Aamir, Muhammad Sami, Wahab Riaz, Muhammad irfan, Tanveer Ahmed, Aizaz Cheema.

Spinners: Danish Kaniera, Abdul Rehman, Saeed Ajmal, Zulfiqar Babar.

Wicker-Keepers: Kamran Akmal, Zulqarnain Haider.

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