ICL: Indian Cricket League


PCB divided on team selection for Sri Lanka tour

Written by Kashif Aziz on March 11th, 2006   (148 views)

A 17-member touring squad for the three One-day Internationals (ODIs) in Sri Lanka was finally announced on Friday by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) with Director Cricket Operations, Saleem Altaf recording his dissent on the selection of so many players for just three ODIs.

According to details gathered by The News, the squad was released after plenty of drama at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore where chief selector Wasim Bari and manager Zaheer Abbas met with Chairman Shaharyar Khan separately to discuss the team composition while Altaf also had his point of view on the selected players.

“Altaf remains unhappy that the selectors have picked so many players for just three one-dayers; he had an argument with Shaharyar over this issue before the squad was finally released. He has bet that not all the players will get an opportunity to play in Sri Lanka and that even the two uncapped players Tahir Khan and Abdul Rehman have been picked without having any notable domestic performances to their credit,” a well-informed source said.

“Altaf, after a heated debate with Shaharyar, finally recorded his note of dissent over the touring squad after Bari had held a long discussion with the chairman and explained the reason for choosing 17 players for just three one-dayers,” the source stated.

The selected squad does not include batsman Asim Kamal, fast bowler Mohammad Sami and off-spinner Arshad Khan while Tahir and Rehman come in for the first time in a senior Pakistan team.

It is no secret that Altaf and Bari have not been on the best of terms in recent times ever since the former started pushing the PCB Ad-hoc Committee to appoint a fulltime paid selection committee, a move that has paid dividends to the extent that the committee members have approved the need to have paid selectors instead of honorary ones.

But due to strong support from Shaharyar, Bari has held onto his position with the Board chairman showing no urgency in making the changes as approved by the committee.

“The fact is that the present selectors including Bari, Iqbal Qasim and Ehteshamuddin were all considered for the paid positions. Letters were written to their departments asking them to spare them for national duty. But their departments refused saying they could not release them for such a long period,” the source said.

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