Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Pakistan head coach and chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq has insisted that he doesn’t regret picking batsmen Ahmed Shehzad and Umar Akmal for the ongoing Twenty20 series against Sri Lanka.
Misbah’s comments come after Shehzad scored four runs in the first Twenty20 International in Lahore on Saturday, which Pakistan lost by 64 runs, while Akmal was dismissed for a golden duck.
However, Misbah noted that it is important to “give a proper chance” to everyone, especially since Shehzad and Akmal have performed well on the domestic circuit.
“We will try to give a proper chance to players (Ahmed Shehzad and Umar Akmal). When we take decisions we obviously have some future planning in mind,” he was quoted as saying by PakPassion. “We look to where we need players going forward or where we can fit in someone. That’s the main objective, you also try to win but I think that in the lead up to the World Cup, we will try to explore with players that we need.
“People are thinking that Fakhar has been dropped. He was completely out of form and wasn’t scoring but we played him in the ODIs. The thinking was that if we want to give him rest then he should still be given confidence and allowed to perform then we check the others. So we haven’t benched him for the T20Is, who benches an in-form batsman? Ahmed Shehzad had performed well in the PSL (Pakistan Super League) so we thought we should give him a chance. So we want to try and get these other players to perform so that the team is confident. When all your batsmen are performing, then only you can beat big teams. You shouldn’t be over reliant on players.
“Iftikhar Ahmed and Umar Akmal have been brought in the team so that we have some power in the team. When you try out something, then you need to have some patience and you shouldn’t be so harsh on players that you give judgement after one innings. If you look at Umar Akmal’s performance over the last year, everyone was asking why he didn’t get a chance because he scored runs in every format in domestic cricket. So if you bring someone on the basis of that and then after one match you press the panic button and say see what he did eight years ago etc, I think that’s unfair.”