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Brad Hogg criticises Amir’s inclusion in Pakistan World Cup squad

Former Australia spinner believes Men in Green has pressed the panic button

PHOTO: AFP

Former Australia Cricketer Brad Hogg has criticised Pakistan’s decision to include senior left-arm pacer Mohammad Amir in their International Cricket Council (ICC) 2019 World Cup.

While selecting his favourites for the upcoming mega event in his vlog, Hogg said Men in Green has pressed the panic button after making late changes to their squad for the mega event.

“I would have put Pakistan in my top four favourites for the World Cup if they didn’t make final changes to their bowling attack,” said Hogg. “They had quality bowlers there, but they started to panic and went for an experienced bowler who hasn’t performed in last couple of years.

Pakistan dropped opener Abid Ali, all-rounder Faheem Ashraf and left-arm seamer Junaid Khan from their World Cup squad after poor performance against England in the limited-overs series, and included lower-order hitter Asif Ali and pacers Amir and Wahab Riaz as their replacements.

Although Hogg wasn’t happy with Amir’s inclusion, he was in favour of including Asif Ali and Riaz in the World Cup squad.

“Faheem Ashraf had to go as he wasn’t performing well,” he said. “I like the inclusion of Riaz as he has pace and a fantastic Yorker, which makes him extremely important during death overs.”

He added: “Asif Ali is an explosive lower-order batsman who can get crucial runs for Pakistan.”

While responding to a question about Pakistan Captain Sarfaraz Ahmed, the 48-year-old was full of praise for the Pakistan skipper.

“I think Sarfaraz is a very good tactician who knows how to operate and rotate his bowlers and sums up situations well,” he said.

Pakistan will kick off their World Cup campaign against West Indies on Friday at Trent Bridge.