Coach Arthur sends for Rahat after poor show by Amir, Wahab in ODIsArchive
LAHORE: Pakistan head coach Mickey Arthur, disappointed by the unimpressive performance of senior pacers Wahab Riaz and Mohammad Amir in the recently concluded ODI series against the West Indies, has asked the national selectors to send fast bowler Rahat Ali to beef up the fast bowling attack in the upcoming Test series.
Sources told Dawn that Arthur has felt the need to have another fast bowler in the West Indies for the Tests and has asked for Rahat who will now be joining pacers Wahab, Amir, Hassan Ali and debutant Mohammad Abbas for the Test series, starting from April 21.
Both Wahab and Amir looked tired in the ODI series and failed to pose a daunting challenge for any of the West Indian players.
Wahab, who took just four wickets for 108 runs in the four T20 games played prior to the ODIs, was inducted in the opening one-dayer against the West Indies but was all over the place, conceding 69 runs in his ten overs for just one wicket as Pakistan failed to defend a formidable total of 308 against the hosts.
On the other hand, fellow fast bowler Amir who was given a rest by the selectors in the T20 series, finished the ODI series with a five-wicket haul but never posed any serious threat to the opposition.
In such a scenario, the surprising omission of successful fast bowler Sohail Khan from the Test squad still remains a mystery. Sohail would have been a better choice for the series than Rahat who has played 20 Tests and claimed just 58 wickets at an unimpressive average of 37.43,
According to insiders, Sohail was not considered for the Test series as he had developed some issues with fast bowling coach Azhar Mahmood during the tour Down Under.
A PCB official on condition of anonymity told Dawn that discarded Hammad Azam could fill the gap if the batting all-rounder was given chance with full backing of the management.
“In the past, Hammad was destroyed due to selectors’ inconsistent attitude with him. But he can easily grab the all-rounder spot if the team management and selectors give him confidence and regular chances,” maintained the official.
Hammad was first included in the ODI team in 2011 and played five matches. The all-rounder played three matches in 2012 and after a gap of three years he played only two matches in 2015 before being totally ignored by the selectors.
Published in Dawn, April 14th, 2017