The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) will not listen to head coach Waqar Younis’ recommendation of dropping Ahmed Shehzad from the side as a punishment for his poor behaviour and egotistic approach.
Waqar wants to stamp his authority on the team and feels that both Shehzad and Umar Akmal should be axed for poor behaviour and performance respectively.
The opener scored 227 runs in seven matches at the World Cup at an average of 32.42 with the help of two half-centuries against minnow UAE and Ireland.
In 2014, Shehzad was Pakistan’s highest run-scorer for Pakistan in one-dayers with 629 runs from 16 matches as he scored two centuries and four fifties, while he also topped for Pakistan in T20Is scoring 181 runs in six outings.
Shehzad continued his growth well in the Tests as well, as he struck three centuries in eight matches, scoring 693 runs, and was the fifth-highest run-getter for the country behind Younus Khan, Misbahul Haq, Azhar Ali and Sarfraz Ahmed.
There were reports of Shehzad challenging Waqar’s authority during the World Cup when he was asked to improve his shot selection.
“Waqar has suggested that both Shehzad and Umar should be dropped based on his observation from the World Cup but there is no reason to drop Shehzad,” a senior PCB official told The Express Tribune. “Umar has not performed well and his axing is fair because he is not willing to learn from his past mistakes and improve his game. But Shehzad cannot be dropped just because someone is finding it hard to deal with him. He played well throughout 2014 and was one of the most consistent of performers.”
Shehzad enjoys a good track record in the Test format, having scored 718 runs in eight matches at an average of 47.86 with three centuries and two fifties.
In 65 one-dayers, he has accumulated 2,212 runs and has average of 34.56, but it is his strike-rate of 72.07 that has been the subject of criticism, especially his inability to rotate the strike.
The 23-year-old has a century in the T20 format as well and is the only Pakistani to have reached the three-figure mark in all formats of the game.
“Shehzad will be told to improve his behaviour and control his ego because it is going against him,” added the official. “He would have been the leading contender for the ODI and T20 captaincy but it’s his attitude which has put him behind Azhar and Sarfraz.”
Selection committee to meet on Tuesday in Lahore
The newly-formed selection committee, headed by Haroon Rasheed, will meet on Tuesday in Lahore to discuss the team for the tour of Bangladesh.
Pakistan are expected to play a solitary T20I, two Tests and three ODIs if the tour does go ahead after a security clearance.
The selectors’ main concern is to fill the void left behind by the departures of Misbahul Haq and Shahid Afridi in the 50-over side.
Opener Nasir Jamshed, Umar and Ehsan Adil are expected to be axed from the team that participated in the World Cup.
oth Umar and Ehsan are likely to be named in the Pakistan A team, which is expected to tour Sri Lanka shortly.
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