In a surprising development – which was probably on the cards ever since the preliminary squad announcement – fast bowler Mohammad Amir and hard-hitting batsman Asif Ali have been finally included in the 15-man list.
According to Geo News, the two will replace Faheem Ashraf and Abid Ali. All-rounder Faheem has been struggling for form for quite a lot of time, however, the exclusion of Abid Ali raises some eyebrows. If he was to be ousted, it would have been better not to take him to England at all.
The stylish right-hander impressed with a century on debut against Australia which earned him a World Cup ticket, however, he hasn’t got a single game with only two matches left in the England series. The impressive form of openers Imam ul Haq and Fakhar Zaman – both have scored a century in the ODI series – might have prompted the selectors to make the call.
Asif Ali’s inclusion is justified but it comes at the cost of Abid Ali. Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Hafeez are yet to feature in the series, and their form also remains a worry for the team selection.
Talking about Amir, he was given a chance to prove his worth in the series, however, an unfortunate turn of events has kept him on the sidelines, meaning that the selectors have had to make the call based on intuition and not the recent form.