Shoaib Akhtar blames Shoaib Malik for Pakistan's poor performance

Shoaib Akhtar said that it was unfortunate that Shoaib Malik was still being played at the expenses of more deserving younger players Getty Images

Karachi: Feb 21, 2012

Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar has blasted the performance of the national team in the one-day series, singling out captain Misbah-ul-Haq and all-rounder Shoaib Malik for scathing criticism.

Shoaib said that the Pakistan team needed to review its selection policy for one-day and T20 matches as there was no longer any place for players like Malik.

“He has been playing for around 12 years and he has accomplished nothing big. He and some other players who used to wait for hours to meet with the then Board Chairman Nasim Ashraf were rewarded,” he said.

Shoaib claimed that Malik had indulged in politics and intrigues in the team being responsible for the ouster of senior all-rounder Abdul Razzaq.

“He even targeted Shahid Afridi and wanted him to be sent home. At one stage manager Talat Ali was prepared to send Afridi home but we all took a stand and said this would not happen,” he recalled.

Shoaib said that it was unfortunate that Malik was still being played at the expenses of more deserving younger players.

“Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq batted well today within their limitations. But the fact is that we need to blood attacking players in our one-day and T20 teams. What is most surprising is that Pakistan which is famous for producing pace bowlers is today struggling in this department.”

The former pacer said that the current crop of pacers had done nothing of note for a while now and even in the series against England .

“We need to find new fast bowlers or else we will find it difficult to even bowl out Bangladesh.”

Shoaib also castigated Misbah for his passive attitude and captaincy.

“What is he doing where is the aggression. You don’t see any aggression in his captaincy in this one-day series. He needs to rethink his policies.”

The Pakistan team has come in for scathing criticism over their performances in the one-day series against England with the Chairman of the Board Zaka Ashraf also hinting at having separate teams for tests, ODIs and T20 matches.

With Australian Dav Whatmore due to take over as head coach after the England series pundits are expecting changes in the management and team for the Asia Cup with one newspaper claiming that Shahid Afridi was once again being considered for the captaincy for the coming tournament in Bangladesh.

Afridi who was sacked as captain last year after a dispute with coach Waqar Younis and the Board has said he is not interested in the captaincy any longer.(PTI)