Pakistan players more interested in playing T20 leagues: Akram

Men in Green have not performed in accordance with expectations during the 2019 World Cup so far

Pakistan players more interested in playing T20 leagues: Akram PHOTO: AFP

Legendary Pakistan pacer Wasim Akram believes that Men in Green cricketers are more interested in playing T20 leagues around the world than playing for Pakistan.

While expressing his frustration in a YouTube video after Pakistan’s defeat to India, Akram said that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) needs to take steps that put first-class cricket back as top priority for cricketers in the country.

“At the moment, the Pakistan player’s mindset is, so what if I don’t play for Pakistan, I can play in T20 leagues,” said Akram. “Young players should play several seasons in domestic cricket and No-Objection Certificates (NOC) should only be given by the PCB to players who have been playing first-class cricket.”

The 53-year-old was also critical of Pakistan skipper’s decision to bowl first despite heading into the match against arch-rivals India with five regular bowlers.

“When you’re going with five bowlers, that means you’re omitting one batsman and bowling would be your strength. And, when you’ve bowling as your strength, you go for defending the total,” he said. “I don’t know why they were hesitant to bat first after they did that well against England and defended the target. All they needed was to put around 280 on the board and back the bowling to defend the score.”

Pakistan have had a below-par 2019 World Cup campaign so far as they only have three points from five games during the event so far. Men in Green will need to win all their remaining matches of the tournament to stay in contention for the title.