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Former Pakistan wicketkeeper-batsman Rashid Latif believes that “nobody will remember” left-arm seamer Mohammad Amir as he continues to stop playing for the national team.
Latif’s comments come after Amir announced his retirement from Test cricket on Friday in order to focus on limited overs cricket.
Latif feels that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is to blame for Amir’s decision to walk away from the longest format.
“The PCB took the decision in haste to allow Amir to return to the national team in 2016 and the same has happened again,” he told The Nation. “Amir in 2017 tried to retire from the longest version of the game but coach Mickey Arthur and the PCB chairman [at that time] managed to convince him to continue playing.
“Amir again in 2018 showed his desire to stop playing Tests to focus on ODIs and T20 Internationals. But somehow, Amir was playing Test cricket. He is only 27 and has only taken 119 wickets. He should have played Test matches till getting 200 or may be 300 plus wickets to be amongst the bowling greats like Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Imran Khan and Shoaib Akhtar.
“He is playing for the national team that’s why people might remember him till he finishes his playing career. But take my word, as he stops playing for the national team, nobody will remember Amir.
“I think it is the PCB who is at fault. They never focus on ensuring national assets should be kept under control. Already Pakistan is struggling to find fast bowlers. Pakistan play very few Tests every year as Pakistan is the only Test playing nation which gets step-motherly treatment from the ICC as far as allocation of Test matches each year is concerned.
“I think the PCB could have easily managed the workload of Amir and others. (Lasith) Malinga had also retired at 27 for Sri Lanka from Test matches and Sri Lanka badly suffered while cricket also lost its charm as a great bowler who was followed by millions quit the original format of cricket.
“For cricketing greats, only Test cricket is real cricket and Test cricket records matter most. The PCB should have convinced Amir to choose between ODIs, T20s and play selected Test matches.
“I suggest the PCB invite Amir and urge him to reconsider his decision and give him a clear plan so he [can] revise his future plans regarding playing for Pakistan.”