The veteran batter has lashed out at Babar Azam and the team management for giving preferential treatment to selective players
Following Pakistan’s shock defeat to Afghanistan in their World Cup, captain Babar Azam has been under severe criticism from several current and former players. Afghanistan defeated Pakistan by eight wickets on Monday, chasing down a tricky 283-run target with ease, handing the Babar-led side their third defeat of the tournament in five games. The likes of Wasim Akram, Misbah ul Haq, Ramiz Raja, Rashid Latif, among others have all put the blame on Babar, who has also struggled to hit match-winning knocks in the tournament so far.
Now, veteran batter Ahmed Shehzad has lashed out at Babar and the team management for giving preferential treatment to selective players, while adding that other players are being exposed in difficult situations.
“I’ve talked to some players. Few players are not welcome in the dressing room. They aren’t given the same level of treatment and confidence as some others. They try to keep certain players in the team and drop the others. Tayyab Tahir was brought in, he wasn’t welcome, and was excluded. Saud Shakeel was brought in based on his Test performances,” Shahzad said during a discussion on ARY News.
Shehzad also questioned the exclusion of mystery spinner Abrar Ahmad from the squad.
“Usama Mir, we had been saying that give him chances before the World Cup to give him confidence… see, Usama is a wrist-spinner. He’s more effective when the ball is old. And he is brought in the 11th over. They’re trying to save certain players and expose these players instead. We had been saying from quite some time that bring in Abrar Ahmad, mystery spinner is needed. These are our colleagues, these are our friends, and these are not welcome,” he added.
Amid backlash for former and out-of-favour players, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), through an official statement, urged everyone to support the team in this tough time.
However, the PCB also hinted that they might opt for a change in leadership, but only after the conclusion of the World Cup.