By Iram Salim
A bunch of non-professionals under the nose of Prime Minister Imran Khan are playing with the fate of Pakistan cricket, it is shameful.
After 5-0 drubbing by Australia, Coach Mickey Arthur should be sent home for his poor experimenting. Imran’s buddy PCB chairman Ehsan Mani seems unbothered about what the hell happening with the team, simply he give a damn. Where is Imran Khan who tirelessly in the past targeted Najam Sethi for being appointed PCB chairman by Nawaz Sharif. Khan should now target his buddy… but he will not.
Dawn also shows mirror to the PTI government and PCB, it writes “ALL is not well with Pakistan cricket. At least that is what the recent 0-5 drubbing the national team received at the hands of Australia in the UAE signifies.
It is true that Pakistan were without their leading players including skipper Sarfraz Ahmed, Babar Azam, Hasan Ali, and others. But the Aussies, too, were not at full strength.
It was expected, therefore, that the series would be an even contest. But what transpired was a whitewash that surprised even the team’s worst critics.
In hindsight, it was not a wise move by the PCB and the selectors to allow the top players to rest so close to the World Cup, which is to commence in England on May 30. Continuing matches for the past five months and burnout fears for the leading players were cited as the prime reason for the hasty decision. However, had the authorities implemented a well-thought-out player-rotation policy starting early last year, it would have provided rest to the top players while grooming many fine youngsters.
The thrashing by the Aussies has punctured Pakistan’s belief that it was on course in its World Cup preparations. The team’s morale is low and, apart from the few rested players, none of the others are a certainty for World Cup selection.
However, there are some positives. The return of Haris Sohail and Rizwan Ahmed to peak form is a good omen. Both slammed two centuries each and, despite their contrasting batting styles, can boost the fledgling middle order. The potential of prolific Abid Ali who slammed a century in his debut match and the blossoming of pacer Usman Shinwari augur well too.
The selectors should discard players like Shoaib Malik and Umar Akmal who have run out of steam. If the lessons from this tour are not learned, it will diminish the team’s ranking and prestige. It is imperative that the players do not lose focus and regroup swiftly to appear at the top in the lead-up to the World Cup. – Pak Destiny