Chief Selector Inzamam Ul Haq announced on Monday that they have made three changes in the preliminary World Cup squad as they have recalled Mohammad Amir, Wahab Riaz and Asif Ali.
Keeping the recent performance of the team during the England series, the chief selector said that they found it necessary to make these changes.
On the other hand, Faheem Ashraf, Abid Ali and Junaid Khan have been dropped from the squad, while the young pace sensation, Mohammad Hasnain has managed to keep his spot intact.
The chief selector justified Wahab Riaz’s selection in the World Cup squad saying that they did not expect such batting friendly wickets in England so Pakistan will need a bowler who has experience and can get reverse swing with the old ball.
Moreover, he had earlier said that they will test Mohammad Amir during England series, but he fell sick and could not feature in any of the five ODIs. However, Inzamam believes that the left-arm pacer is a quality bowler and his experience will come handy in the conditions.
“The inclusion of Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz will add experience in the bowling line up,” said Inzamam Ul Haq. “Wahab Riaz performed well in the domestic season and seems fit for the conditions, which is why we called him.”
The chief selector said that Junaid Khan and Faheem Ashraf are not bad bowlers, it is just that they are not suited for the conditions because of flat pitches, Pakistan need faster bowlers who can bowl well with the older ball as well.
Asif Ali’s role will be key down the order as Pakistan need a big-hitter specially on these dead wickets. He has performed well in the recently concluded series against England, which the visitors lost 4-0.
The 49-year old denied that they are panicking, instead he said that if there is an opportunity where they can change the squad then why should not they achieve it.
“We are not panicking, if we can make some changes in the squad for the better, then I don’t think there is any harm,” he said.
Inzamam was happy to announce that Shadab Khan is completely fit for Pakistan to feature in the World Cup 2019.
The chief selector feels Pakistan’s performance has not been that bad during England series and there are many positives.
“Our batting has done really well during the series, giving a fight while chasing 374 on any wicket is not easy,” he said. “It is not only our bowlers who have conceded runs, England bowlers have also gone for plenty of runs.”
World Cup squad
Sarfraz Ahmed (c), Fakhar Zaman, Imam Ul Haq, Babar Azam, Haris Sohail, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Imad Wasim, Asif Ali, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Amir, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Hasnain, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Shah Afridi