Pak players ducking domestic matches must be omitted from national team: Sultan Rana

April 17th, 2011 - 1:24 pm ICT by ANI  

Islamabad, April 17(ANI): Those international-level Pakistan cricketers who do not make themselves available for their domestic teams, should also be excluded from the national squad, the Pakistan Cricket Board’s Domestic Cricket Director Sultan Rana has said.

When asked during an interview whether any players who are not making themselves available for their domestic teams should be ruled out from the Pakistan team, Rana said: I think that’s the way it should be.”

“I remember there were certain players who didn’t play in the First Class circuit last year - and they were not considered for selection [in the Pakistan team]. So this policy is already in place and I think we need to be stricter about it. Only the players who participate in domestic cricket should be considered for the national team. I think this policy is being followed,” quote Rana, as saying.

He said that the selection committee, who pick cricketers for the national squad, go and watch the domestic matches and have records of all the players.

“They don’t consider the players who have not represented [their domestic teams] or have not performed. That is why if you just take a look at the previous Pakistani team, in the last 3 years or so, they have been changed. So domestic cricket is providing them replacements for the players who are unfit, not performing well or on the verge of retirement - so that we have a backup. A lot depends upon those who are picked up as replacements to maintain their position in the team,” said Rana.

He also dismissed the impression that domestic cricket was not producing players at all as rubbish, saying that all players in the Pakistan team in the last ten years had come up from domestic cricket.

“Right from the year 2000, all of them came through the pathway which we have here in Pakistan - a system where they come and then go on to represent Pakistan,” he added.

Talking about Pakistan’s dismal fielding performances, Rana said: “I think Pakistan team has never been a good fielding outfit. Look at our fifty years of history - they were all average, mediocre fielders but they still went on to play for Pakistan for years. So fielding was never an integral part of Pakistan cricket, which is very unfortunate.”

When pointed out that some Pakistani batsmen have rather large and impressive averages in domestic cricket, but they tend to struggle against seaming deliveries or good spin bowling at the international level, Rana noted that since domestic cricketers have the experience of playing only inside Pakistan, they might struggle to perform on foreign pitches.

“Once the international teams start touring Pakistan, these players won’t have to go to England, New Zealand, Abu Dhabi or Sri Lanka to play their home series. When playing a series at home, you are used to the pitches and the atmosphere there which definitely helps a lot,” he said. (ANI)

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