Sunday, March 6, 2016

Where is the Accountability in Pakistan's Selection Process?

Mukhtar Ahmed was selected to open for Pakistan in T20s. In his first 3 matches he scored 37, 83, and 62. Then in the next 3 matches he was dismissed for 2,4, and 4. After 6 T20s for Pakistan, Mukhtar averages more and has a higher strike rate than any opener for Pakistan in T20s. Why did the selectors discard him after 3 bad innings?

Sami Aslam was selected in Pakistan's test and ODI squads. In 2 tests, he could not score more than 20. In his only ODI he scored 45. Why was he dropped from the ODI squad?

Ahmed Shehzad, in his first 8 tests, scored 3 centuries and 2 fifties. He averaged 48. In his next 3 tests he had scores of 9, 43*, 1, 69, 21, 0; and then he was dropped from the test team. Sure he has not been up to the mark in ODIs and T20s but why was he dropped from the test team?

Since 1st January 2015, Mohammad Hafeez has played 22 ODIs for Pakistan and has piled up 900 runs (including 2 centuries and 6 fifties) at an average of 42.85 and strike rate of 86.12. In the same period he has played 7 tests where he has scored 710 runs (2 centuries and 2 fifties) at an average of 59.16. Whereas, in 15 T20s during this period he has only 1 fifty; in his other 14 innings he has crossed 25 only once. Why does he continue to play T20 cricket for Pakistan?

Khurram Manzoor did well in one day games against the England Lions. He also performed well in the National One-Day Competition. Why was he selected in a T20 squad?

Sherjeel Khan made his ODI and T20 debut for Pakistan at the end of 2013 and played both formats for 6 months. After an impressive 61 on ODI debut, he failed miserably in his next 10 ODIs. In 3 T20s during the same time he had scores of 18, 34, and 50. Why was he dropped from both formats after that and didn't continue playing only T20s?

Fawad Alam has an ODI and Test average of over 40. He was Pakistan's leading run scorer in ODIs in 2014. He made a century on test debut. He keeps piling on the runs in domestic cricket. Why is he continuously ignored?

Anwar Ali has played 22 ODIs and 16 T20s for Pakistan. He has been a permanent feature of the team for the past 2-3 years. He averages 52 and 35 with the ball respectively in ODIs and T20s. Why does he continue to get selected?

Sohaib Maqsood had a very impressive start to his ODI career scoring 50s in his first 2 ODIs. He continued to do well in ODIs leading Pakistan to some memorable victories. In 25 ODIs he averaged 32 and had a strike rate of 84. During the same time, he didn't do well in T20s at all with a highest score of 37 in 15 T20s and an average of under 15. After the World Cup in 2015 he got injured. Since his comeback he has played T20s only, where he failed, and eventually got dropped. Why hasn't he played ODIs since his injury? Why wasn't he dropped from T20s long before?

Junaid Khan has picked up 78 wickets in 52 ODIs at an average of 27 and an economy of 5.27. He also has 71 wickets in 22 tests including five 5-wicket hauls. Why hasn't he played a single international game for Pakistan for almost a year?

Mohammad Nawaz has an impressive List A and First Class record as a batsman. He opened for NBP throughout last season and performed admirably. In the PSL he batted at 4 or 5 for Quetta Gladiators and impressed everyone with his aggressive batting. He was more than a handful with the ball and was also among the top wicket takers of the league. Primarily a batsman, why was he played only as a bowled in the recent Asia Cup? Why wasn't he included from the get go to bat in the top 6?

Imad Wasim has 7 wickets from 8 T20s at an average of 22. He also has 7 wickets from 6 ODIs at an average of 29. His economy is phenomenal, 6.1 in T20s and 4.7 in ODIs. Sure, he had a poor PSL but why didn't he play a single game in the Asia Cup?

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I know there are many more examples that I can include here. There is an endless list. But the above is enough to understand that Pakistan's selectors are mindless and totally incapable of maintaining any sort of continuity.

Can someone please explain why Pakistan's selectors and team management are so inept? Why are they incapable of understanding something as basic as performance? Why can't they differentiate across formats? Do they not understand cricket that well? Do they not understand a player's temperament and ability in each format? What are the basis for the decisions they make? Why is there no accountability for the school-boy errors they make on a continuous basis? Why do they make decisions based on emotions rather than logic, rationale, and performance? Does no one look at the data?

It really makes me wonder if Pakistan's selectors have any sort of sense at all.

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  1. Mansoor Kidwai said...

    Great article with some real hard facts & figures. I hope someone sends a copy of this to PCB selectors just to embarrass them.

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