Misbah must say good-bye to ODIs: Akram

KARACHI: Former captain Wasim Akram Tuesday blamed a lack of international cricket and the absence of a system for developing young players for Pakistan’s disappointing defeats in recent months.

Pakistan lost the final one-day international against Australia in Abu Dhabi on Sunday to complete a 3-0 rout, and the upcoming Test series in the United Arab Emirates looks likely to be a tough proposition.

The common complaint in international cricket is that teams play too many matches, but Wasim said Pakistan were suffering for precisely the opposite reason.

“Australia were always favourites to win the one-day series,” Wasim told AFP.

“So don’t blame the Pakistan team, because they are playing so much less international cricket than other countries.“

Pakistan lost one-day and Test series against Sri Lanka in August — their first international encounters in six months.

“India is playing too much cricket and so is Sri Lanka, and they are performing well,” said Wasim, who also hit out at a lack of infrastructure and shortage of junior-level tours.

“I think the Pakistan Cricket Board should arrange more Under-19 tours and Pakistan ‘A’ tours which will help groom youngsters but that is not there,” he said.

The suspension of star spinner Saeed Ajmal, banned last month for an illegal bowling action, hit Pakistan hard.

“Pakistan’s attack is very weak without Ajmal and they will be all at sea whether to make spinning wickets for the Tests or make fast pitches, because both ways they are in trouble,” said Wasim.

Pakistan play a two-Test series against Australia, with the first match starting in Dubai on October 22.

“We have so much talent — look at Umar Akmal, Umar Amin, Asad Shafiq. But they are not learning from their mistakes and are not brave enough at this level,” said Wasim.

Fast bowling legend Wasim urged struggling one-day and Test captain Misbah-ul Haq to take a positive approach with the team, or step aside.

“I think Misbah should take brave and aggressive decisions but he is not doing that,” said Wasim of Misbah, who withdrew himself from the third and final one-dayer in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.

Misbah on Monday told AFP his one-day future was linked to his batting form.

“If any vice captain is ready to lead then Pakistan must say goodbye to him as far as one-day is concerned,” said Wasim.

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