‘Demoting seniors players to Second XI is an insult’ Kamran Akmal

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Lahore: Wicket-keeper batsman Kamran Akmal spoke about the selection policy for the upcoming National T20 Cup, scheduled to start from September 30 in Multan. 

Speaking to PakPassion.net, Akmal said demoting senior players like Salman Butt to Second XI is really an insult. “It’s become ridiculous now as senior players are being asked to make room for Under-19 players in the First XI. Go ahead and provide opportunities for our younger players but do so with some proper planning and let them prove themselves by playing in Division 2,” said Akmal.

“What message we are sending to youngsters if we ask players like Salman Butt, Azhar Ali, myself, or Usman Salahuddin to play in the Second XI,” he asked.

The cricketer highlighted the cricket structure in England and Australia where U19 players are provided with an opportunity at lower level and afterward they make it to the senior team.

“In England and Australia, Under-19 cricketers do the hard yards in the lower divisions and once they have proven their mettle, they advance to the next stage but in Pakistan, we seem to be following the opposite route,” he said.

Akmal said senior players had always faced irresponsible attitude as they were forced aside despite having a few more years of cricket left in them. “Players like Shoaib Akhtar, Mohammad Yousuf, and Abdul Razzaq took retirement at a time when a few more years of cricket was left in them. Had each of these players remained a few more years in the side, they would have helped groom the next generation of excellent cricketers for Pakistan,” he concluded.

Read: Heated moment with Gambhir was misunderstanding: Kamran Akmal

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