Pak selectors miffed with Malik, Yousuf for choosing Bangladesh money over country

Saturday, February 5, 2011

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan cricket team selectors are miffed with former captains Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Yousuf over their decision to play in the Bangladesh Cricket League instead of focussing on the ongoing domestic season to earn their place back in the national team.

According to sources, the selectors were surprised by the players’ move to take part in the BCL at a time when they should have been fighting hard to regain their place in the Pakistan team after being ignored for the upcoming World Cup, starting February 19.

While Malik was not cleared for selection by the Integrity Committee of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Yousuf was ignored for both the ongoing New Zealand tour and the 2011 World Cup because of suspected fitness problems.

“Why think about going to Bangladesh in the first place when the domestic season is on and any performance will count for both the players in their bid to make a comeback in the national team,” the Daily Times quoted one source close to the selectors, as saying.

The selectors would speak to the PCB about Malik’s decision to play in Bangladesh when the domestic one-day championship was in progress, the source added. Interestingly, after rejecting Malik’s application initially, the board later gave him the permission to go and play in Bangladesh.

The source also noted that Yousuf had gone to play in Bangladesh even before Pakistan’s World Cup squad was finalised.

“His (Yousuf) preference to play in Bangladesh over domestic cricket may have gone against him during the World Cup team selection,” he said, adding, “Yousuf’s decision to play in Bangladesh at that time left the selectors feeling he was giving more preference to money rather than the country.”

But sources close to Malik and Yousuf claim that the duo had lost faith in Pakistan’s selectors.

“Look, Malik played diligently in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy for PIA and also in the final and was a top performer in the competition yet he was overlooked because the board didn’t give him clearance. So why shouldn’t he go now and make some extra money in the Bangladesh league,” one source said.

Similarly, another source close to Yousuf said the former captain felt dejected after being snubbed from the World Cup-bound Pakistan team despite scoring runs in the national one-day championship. (ANI)

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