Cricket:-Pakistan’s Chairman of Selectors Inzamam-ul-Haq has defended picking his nephew in the ODI squad for the five match series against Sri Lanka.
Imam-ul-Haq, who represented Pakistan in the Under-19 World Cup in 2014, has been picked in Pakistan’s squad for the Sri Lanka series. He comes in place of Azhar Ali, who is nursing a knee injury.
Apart from that change, Pakistan have retained the same squad that won the ICC Champions Trophy in England in June.
Inzamam spoke to journalists during the second Test between Sri Lanka and Pakistan in Dubai and was asked whether it was tough for him to pick his nephew.
“If you say that he is my nephew, then the selection was tough. But if you see the performance which he has given, (they’re) good. Our plan was to continue with the Champions trophy squad, but unfortunately Azhar Ali has a knee problem. So we needed one opener, and in my opinion (Imam’s) was the best performance amongst the openers,” Inzamam said.
Imam is considered a better player in the longer version of the game than in the shorter format, but Inzamam pointed out that Imam had the talent to succeed in the shorter forms as well.
“Look, you have to notice the talent and what he can do. His performance was good in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy. Then he scored two hundreds for the Under-23 team in the triangular tournament in Bangladesh. He scored a hundred in Sialkot. Even Mickey (Arthur) and Sarfraz (Ahmed) gave (their) opinions. We all consult each other,” Inzamam added.
The former Pakistan captain added that he has not given up hope on Umar Akmal, who was suspended for three matches after his outburst of coach Mickey Arthur.
“I have not spoken to him after the ban, but I tried to make him understand a few things previously. We can’t shut the door on any player. His issue is fitness and now another issue is discipline. He needs to improve on these issues and then he will be considered,” Inazamam summed up.