Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Former Pakistan captain Aamir Sohail feels that left-arm seamer Usman Khan Shinwari failed to have much of an impact with the ball as he became too predictable.
Usman featured in three Asia Cup matches, but only claimed three wickets at an average of 34.66.
Sohail pointed out that head coach Mickey Arthur and captain Sarfraz Ahmed should have seen the warning signs and given someone else a go.
“We also knew that Usman Khan Shinwari with his action would angle the ball outside the off-stump to a right-hand batsman,” Sohail wrote in his blog for PakPassion. “To bring the ball into the batsman with Shinwari’s action was always going to be difficult and really, the captain and head coach should have recognised the fact that this bowler was getting too predictable, and that really was the end of it.”
Sohail was also less than impressed with Pakistan’s hesitance to give left-arm pace bowler Junaid Khan an opportunity to prove his worth.
Junaid only played in one game during the Asia Cup, which was Pakistan’s knockout match against Bangladesh. He fared extremely well in the virtual semi-final as he took four wickets while conceding just 19 runs from his nine overs.
“There was a lot of criticism directed at the captain and head coach for their reluctance to include Junaid Khan in the team when things weren’t going that well for Pakistan,” Sohail wrote. “He was eventually brought in but a little bit too late.
“Whilst it’s easy to look for sinister motives behind ignoring Junaid from selection, I would put it down to the inability of the team management to judge which players can actually perform in the prevailing conditions.
“Mohammad Amir appeared ineffective during this tournament as he was unable to swing the ball and so he was rightly replaced by Shaheen Shah Afridi.
“If after playing so many games with this team, we still don’t know who is the best player suited for such conditions then we are in big trouble and this sort of approach needs to be remedied as soon as possible.”