ICL: Indian Cricket League

Rana Naved, Asif will have to wait for ODI series



Pakistan might have to wait till the one-day series against England for fit-again pacers Rana Naved-ul-Hasan and Mohammad Asif to be back in their ranks, a team official hinted on Tuesday.

Coach Bob Woolmer said that the performance of Rana and Asif in the nets at The Oval on Tuesday was encouraging only to add that its difficult to say whether they would be playing in the fourth Test beginning here from August 17 (tomorrow).

Rana and Asif recently returned to England after being passed fit to join their team-mates here.

Rana suffered from a knee injury while playing a county match for Sussex earlier this summer. He was part of the initial touring party but was later dropped after it became clear that his injury was serious. Asif came here with the squad in June but was sent home for treatment and rest ahead of the opening Test at Lord’s after sustaining an elbow injury.

The injured duo’s absence together with that of Shoaib Akhtar is generally seen as the prime reason behind Pakistan’s poor showing on this tour.

Though Pakistan are desperate to end the series with a win at The Oval, chances are that they might not risk playing Rana and Asif here later this week.

At least that is the message one gets from Woolmer. Pakistan are well aware the only saving grace for them on this tour would be if they manage to win the five-match ODI series and would rather opt to have their top pace trio of Shoaib, Rana and Asif fully fit for it.

Pakistan have already sent back young medium pacer Samiullah Niazi back home and might have to stick with Umar Gul and the under-performing Mohammad Sami as their new ball strikers in the fourth Test.
Source:The News

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, August 16th, 2006 and is filed under General.

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