Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) dropped Imad Wasim and Yasir Shah from the squad that was announced for the upcoming tour of the African continent and so here is a look what happened and why.
So, What’s The Squad In The First Place
The touring party as announced by chief selector Mohd. Wasim for the series in South Africa and Zimbabwe include the following cricketers.
Test squad: Babar Azam (capt), Imran Butt, Abid Ali, Abdullah Shafique, Azhar Ali, Fawad Alam, Saud Shakeel, Agha Salman, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf, Tabish Khan, Hasan Ali, Shahnawaz Dhani, Nauman Ali, Zahid Mahmood, Sajid Khan.
ODI squad: Babar Azam (capt), Imam-ul-Haq, Fakhar Zaman, Abdullah Shafique, Haider Ali, Danish Aziz, Saud Shakeel, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Wasim Jr, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Sarfaraz Ahmed (wk), Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf, Mohammad Hasnain, Usman Qadir, Hasan Ali.
T20I squad: Babar Azam (capt), Shadab Khan, Sharjeel Khan, Mohammad Hafeez, Haider Ali, Danish Aziz, Asif Ali, Mohammad Nawaz, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Sarfaraz Ahmed (wk), Shaheen Shah Afridi, Mohammad Wasim Jr, Haris Rauf, Mohammad Hasnain, Usman Qadir, Hasan Ali, Arshad Iqbal.
Why Imad Wasim Was Dropped?
The chief selector while explaining the decision said that, “We have replaced Imad Wasim with Mohammad Nawaz keeping in mind the way he has performed. One thing that we saw missing in our side was bowlers who were able to bowl at different stages of the match, be it with the new ball or in the middle overs, and Nawaz is someone who can do that. The same applies to his batting as he can fit in at any slot considering the situation of the match.
“We have seen some limitations in Imad’s game, which he needs to improve. In white-ball cricket, especially, you can’t be a limited cricketer and need to be ready for a given situation or conditions.
“When we compared the two, we saw Nawaz as the better option.”
Despite the chief selector’s explanation the decision still makes little sense as Imad ‘s record both with the new ball and as a finisher has been pretty decent off late. The only argument that goes against Imad is that he didn’t express himself the way he should have as an all-rounder during the recently postponed PSL 6.
Why Yasir Shah Was Dropped?
Wasim further explained that Yasir Shah was dropped owing to an injury and that PCB wants him fit ahead of some of the other important series that follow later in the year. Nevertheless, reports in media suggest that Yasir isn’t too happy with the decision.
The possibility behind Yasir’s exclusion then is pretty straight forward. The leggie despite years and years of experience behind him has failed to impress almost every time the green shirts have played in the southern hemisphere. Thus, it seems the selectors have had enough and decided to try new spinners for conditions that aren’t similar to Asia. Moreover, the tour of Zimbabwe provides an ideal opportunity to experiment and so, neither the selectors nor the support staff want to let go of the opportunity without finding out what happens if Yasir doesn’t play.
What’s The Way Forward For Imad Wasim And Yasir Shah?
Both senior cricketers aren’t in an ideal position for sure. Imad most definitely needs to perform big during PSL 6 (i.e. when it starts again). He also needs to hope that Nawaz in South Africa and Zimbabwe fails to meet the selectors’ expectations otherwise, Imad’s international career is in jeopardy for sure!
The case of Yasir Shah too isn’t much different. The leggie is likely to be dropped every time Pakistan travel to the southern hemisphere if either Zahid or Nauman prove their worth during the upcoming tour. The 34 year old will also have to perform big next time a home series happens in Pakistan in order to ensure that his place in the playing eleven at least when Pakistan plays in Asia remains secure.