LAHORE: Pakistan chief selector Haroon Rasheed says the national selectors are tracking the progress of spinner Saeed Ajmal, who is playing for Worcestershire in the English domestic season.
Haroon Rasheed, in an interview with a cricket website, revealed that the right-arm off-break bowler Saeed Ajmal remains a contender for the national team.
“He’s been a great asset for Pakistan and is doing well in the county season and bowling really well with his new action,” said Haroon Rasheed, “We are in touch with him and he is keeping us informed about his progress.
“He remains on the selector’s radar and in the reckoning especially since he has put in a lot of effort with his new action.”
When questioned about Mohammad Amir’s return, Haroon said that it was too early to comment on his performance.
“He hasn’t really started playing serious cricket yet and has recently suffered an injury so it’s too premature to comment on that subject,” said the Chief Selector, “Once Amir is back in domestic fully then we can talk again on this subject and properly assess how he is doing.”
Haroon also talked about Umar Akmal’s absence in Pakistan’s ODI series currently being held in Sri Lanka.
“Let me state what I have said so before in the media. We asked players including Umar Akmal who were in contention for the ODIs against Sri Lanka to report to the National Cricket Academy but he didn’t show up.” He went on to add, “Umar is playing Twenty20s in the Caribbean at the moment which is fine as his One Day International performance in the last few games hasn’t been that great, so yes, he can continue with the CPL and if we feel a need to call him back urgently, we will do that.”
The interviewer also broached the exclusion of Fawad Alam from the series of Pakistan against Sri Lanka. “There is no deficiency in Fawad,” said Haroon, “The fact is that in total of four hundred players that we are looking at for a place in the squads, only fifteen or sixteen will be picked at any given time, however, we have given him a few chances in the limited overs format during the Bangladesh series where he played three ODIs, yet he did not perform that well. By the way, just to confirm, Fawad was preferred over Asad Shafiq in those games. Although he has done well in the past few domestic seasons and also did well on the Pakistan ‘A’ tour of Sri Lanka, in our view, he seems to be better suited for the longer format of the game where he can play alongside Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan. Fawad has been given consistent chances and we want the same for other players also.”