Pakistan has announced its 16 member team which will take part in the three ODIs vs. Australia in the UAE and Misbah-Ul-Haq has been retained as a captain.
The important omission from the team was the most senior middle order batsman, Younis Khan and that of the ace fast bowler, Umar Gul.
Younis Khan had a lean period with the bat and managed just one fifty in his last nine outings. He took part in two matches against England in the One Day International series played in the United Arab Emirates earlier this year and scored just 15 runs. The 34-year-old was a member of the Pakistani team which won the Asia Cup 2011-12. The poor run of form in the limited over cricket continued in the tournament since he scored 67 mere runs in four innings at an average of 16.75 with the best of 52. The recently concluded series against the hosts, Sri Lanka, in June 2012, was even worse for him as he scored 4 and 1 run in two innings.
The prominent fast bowler, Umar Gul, is another failure with the ball, got just four wickets against Sri Lanka in even games and was not considered for selection.
The wicketkeeper, Kamran Akmal, and the all rounder, Shoaib Malik has won the confidence of the selectors and their places have been confirmed in the side. The young fast bowler, Anwar Ali, has also been named in the unit and he will most probably make an ODI debut for the Green Shirts. Below, we will highlight the above three players and their performance.
The wicketkeeper batsman has been an important member of the Pakistani side and played his last game in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011, against India. The semi-final which was lost by Pakistan with a margin of 29 runs, took place on March 30, 2011, at Mohali, Chandigarh. Kamran Akmal dropped many important catches behind the stumps in the entire tournament and in the semi final as well. He was dropped after the World Cup, 2011, from the national squad and has to wait for more than a year to come back in the side.
The 30-year-old has played 137 ODIs, held 136 catches with 25 stumping. He scored 2924 runs at an average of 27.58, the best of 124 with 5 hundreds and 9 half centuries.
The ex-captain of Pakistan and an all rounder was re-inducted in the team after a lapse of almost one year in the ODI series against England which was held in UAE in February, 2012. He scored 7 and 23 runs in two matches and was unable to pick any wicket. His inclusion in the team at the cost of the experienced Younis Khan is being criticised in the cricketing circles.
The 30-year-old has played 203 matches, smashed 5253 runs averaging 33.03, the best of 143 with 7 centuries and 31 fifties. He has grasped 139 wickets at an average of 36.10 with the best of 4-19 runs per wicket.
The right arm medium fast bowler was born on November 25, 1987, in Karachi. He has played for Pakistan Under-19s, Karachi Harbour, Karachi Zebras, Pakistan International Airlines and Karachi Urban. He is a destructive fast bowler who has the ability to utilise the new and old ball equally good. He was a proud member of the Pakistan Under-19s and was instrumental in winning the final by grabbing 5-35 runs.
The 24-year-old has played 48 List A matches and has secured 76 wickets at an average of 26.15 with the best of 4-37. He has a bright future ahead of him and can prove to be a lethal weapon for Pakistan in the time to come.
Misbah-ul-Haq (capt), Nasir Jamshed, Mohammad Hafeez, Azhar Ali, Asad Shafiq, Umar Akmal, Kamran Akmal (wk), Shahid Afridi, Sohail Tanvir, Aizaz Cheema, Saeed Ajmal, Imran Farhat, Shoaib Malik, Abdur Rehman, Junaid Khan, Anwar Ali.