Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Pakistan pace bowler Umar Gul believes that opening batsman Abid Ali and left-arm seamer Usman Khan Shinwari should have been in the World Cup squad.
Abid had been in good form in the lead-up to the World Cup and even scored a century in his ODI debut against Australia in Dubai on March 29.
Having scored 117 runs in three ODIs at an average of 39, Gul felt that the 31-year-old could have fared well at the World Cup.
Gul also questioned why Shinwari was left out in favour of 19-year-old pace bowler Mohammad Hasnain, who didn’t play a single game at the World Cup.
Hasnain has featured in five ODIs for Pakistan and taken five wickets at an average of 60.60.
As for Shinwari, he has played 15 ODIs and taken 28 wickets at an average of 19.32.
“Abid had shown the potential and without any reason, he was not considered for the World Cup,” Gul told The Nation. “Pakistan entered with only two specialist openers and everyone had witnessed how much we suffered. Had the selectors paid heed towards the inclusion of a third regular opener, or utilised Hafeez as an opener, the team’s performance could have been far better.
“I fail to understand why Hafeez is [being] used as a middle order batsman. Who [are] the PCB and team management trying to shield and what was the purpose of dropping the in-form Haris Sohail form the initial World Cup matches despite his superb century against Australia in the UAE ODI series.
“Why was Hasnain picked so early in his career and why was a major strike bowler like Usman Shinwari, who had taken 28 wickets, [left out] for the mega event?”