Image taken by: Bimal Mirwani
Veteran seamer Wahab Riaz has issued a blunt and direct warning to the rest of the Pakistan bowlers, saying he will take their spot for the 2023 World Cup.
With a couple of places still up for grabs in the pace attack, the 37-year-old knows that he has a slim chance at best to get into the squad for the 50-over tournament in India later this year.
However, he pointed out that if his performances are better than some of the current bowlers being given an opportunity, then he hopes the selectors will grant him the chance to make his international comeback.
It should be noted that Wahab, who was recently unveiled as the Punjab Sports Minister, last played for Pakistan in December 2020.
“It all depends on my performance. If I’m better than [the] rest of the bowlers then I’ll take the spot,” he told Samaa News as quoted by Cricket Pakistan.
Most recently, he played for the Khulna Tigers in the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) and finished with 13 wickets in seven matches, which included two four-wicket hauls, at an average of 14.07 and an economy rate of 6.90.
Wahab will be hoping to further capture the selectors’ attention during the ongoing Pakistan Super League (PSL), where he is playing for the Peshawar Zalmi.
The Zalmi kicked off their PSL 8 campaign against the Karachi Kings on Tuesday and Wahab finished with figures of 2-34 off his four overs to help his side win by two runs.
The Zalmi’s next match will be against the Multan Sultans on February 17.
Peshawar Zalmi Squad for PSL 8: Babar Azam, Rovman Powell, Bhanuka Rajapaksa (Sri Lanka), Mujeeb Ur Rehman, Sherfane Rutherford, Wahab Riaz, Arshad Iqbal, Danish Aziz, Mohammad Haris, Aamer Jamal, Tom Kohler-Cadmore, Saim Ayub, Salman Irshad, Usman Qadir, Haseebullah Khan, Sufyan Muqeem, James Neesham, Khurram Shahzad, Haris Sohail and Richard Gleeson