Chief Selector Responds to Criticism Over Exclusion of Players for West Indies Series

Chief Selector, Muhammad Wasim, has opened up on the recently announced squad and said that the committee has decided to get maximum points as the series is part of ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 Super League.

“As the ODIs against the West Indies are part of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 qualification, we have decided to give the best chance to our side to collect maximum points and strengthen our chances of progressing directly for the pinnacle 50-over tournament.”

Yesterday, the cricket board announced a 16-man squad for the upcoming three-match ODI series against West Indies scheduled from June 8 to June 12 but faced criticism for the exclusion of some of the players.

Expressing his satisfaction over the squad, Wasim stated that they have added the same players to the squad who were part of Australia’s ODI leg as they wanted to further consolidate the side for the 50-over format.

“We have retained the same core of players so they further establish themselves in the format. I hope this bunch will continue the form they gained from the Australia series.”

Earlier this year, Babar Azam-led Pakistan bounced back after the defeat in the first ODI against Australia at home and clinched the three-match ODI series by 2-1. It was also the first time Pakistan defeated Australia in a bilateral series in 20 years.

Answering a question regarding reducing the squad size, Wasim said,  “Also, and taking into consideration that there will be no Managed Event Environment and the players can be called at a short notice, we have reduced the squad size to 16 players.”

“For the Australia ODIs, we had also announced backup players as cover to those players who were carrying injuries. Players such as Mohammad Nawaz and Shadab Khan are now fully fit, which has allowed us to leave out Asif Afridi and Usman Qadir,” he concluded.