Yesterday evening the 15 member squad of Pakistan cricket team was announced that will be representing the country in World Cup 2019. After taking a closer look at the chosen players, it is rather a perplex we are in – is Pakistan’s bowling side good or barely good enough?
First and foremost the shocker comes in as we see the potentially best bowler of Pakistan left behind. Muhammad Amir, with his decade of experience and proven performance on English pitch during the Champions Trophy, has been dropped and we are concerned whether he’ll be missed a little too much in the coming days when men in green play on the grounds of England.
And so it looks like, fans aren’t the only one showing concern, former captain Pakistan cricket team Shahid Afridi foresees the same.
Must’ve been a tough decision for selection committee to select the best 15 member squad for the WC. Best of luck to those who have made it – Hopefully you’ll bring the cup home. Personally I’ll miss @WahabViki bcz of pace & @iamamirofficial given the English conditions.
— Shahid Afridi (@SAfridiOfficial) April 18, 2019
The second shock surfaces as Muhammad Hasnain – a 19-years old pacer – with an experience of mere 3 international 50-over matches to his credit, comes in as a replacement of Amir. His beyond mediocre average is one wicket in every 103.6 balls and has yet to make a run for himself in the international matches. ‘Exciting surprise’ as pronounced by Chief Selector Inzaman Ul Haq yesterday, his achievements are nonetheless unexplained for the spot in the 15 member squad. Too young to fit in a game where years of experience sometimes fall short.
Another promising name Usman Shinwari, with his best average of 19.32, was a name many anticipated on the final 15 squad for World Cup 2019, however on some unfathomable grounds, he has also not made it to the list of selection committee. This is the point where the questions are beyond what our mind can answer.
However, young-star player Hasan Ali with an average of 28.9 is on the squad and many on the opponents side would consider him threat given his past unbeaten record of taking fastest 50 wickets in Pakistan’s cricket history. Hasan has also proven his mettle lately in both domestic and international matches. Additionally Junaid Khan has also made it to the World Cup 2019 squad, first time since his ODI debut in 2011. While Junaid has a mediocre average of 31.7, his recent performance in PSL and experience of nearly a decade will most likely come into play as he runs on the pitch.
Alongside, we also see Shaheen Shah Afridi. Yet another 19-year old fast-paced bowler who takes a wicket every 24.4 balls he throws. His average is a promising 19.36 and has done well enough for him to secure a place in the World Cup team. This leaves us to wonder again, why do we have two young fast paced, young bowlers like Hasnain and Shaheen in the team – with only a difference of the number of matches they have played.
Here again, Shaheen’s experience would come into play and we find it unimaginable (or too bold of a move) for both Hasnain and Shaheen to play on the green side in one match.
Albeit it is yet to be seen how the selected 15 perform on the first field day, June 3 to be precise, we do reckon if the selection committee will amend the problematic decisions before May 23. It is not too late to make Pakistan’s bowling side better than all others in the tournament, particularly with regard to the vast choice of bowlers we have in the country.