Wasim Akram issues stern warning to Haris Rauf over Test series absence

Akram stressed the importance of Test cricket and advised Rauf to embrace its challenges if he aims to be recognized among the modern greats in the sport

Wasim Akram issues stern warning to Haris Rauf over Test series absence PHOTO: AFP

Former Pakistan pacer Wasim Akram has voiced his concern over Pakistan speedster Haris Rauf's decision to skip the upcoming three-match Test series against Australia.

In a recent interview at the Kayo Sports’ summer of cricket launch event, Akram emphasized the significance of Test cricket and warned Rauf that if he aspires to be recognized among the sport's modern greats, he must embrace the challenges of the longest format.

“That’s his decision. He’s a contracted player, so there’s a lot of controversies back home,” Akram said.

“There are some white-ball specialist cricketers in this day and age … if he thinks he’s not there as yet, then that’s his call," he added.

The former left-arm pacer also acknowledged Rauf's status as a contracted player and noted the controversies surrounding his decision. However, the cricket icon didn't mince his words.

“Test is a big boy’s game at the end of the day. You’ve got to bowl eight-over spells. In T20 you bowl four overs and stand at fine leg. Piece of cake," he said.

“Test cricket is a long race, and if you want to be remembered as a great of the game, that’s where Test cricket comes in,” he concluded.

Chief Selector Wahab Riaz unveiled the 18-player Pakistan Test squad for the Australia Test tour on November 20th, marking his first task as the head of the selection committee. 

Wahab addressed Rauf’s omission in a press conference, shedding light on right-arm pacer’s decision to withdraw from the tour due to concerns over workload management.

“Haris Rauf was initially picked for the tour but he refused to partake in it, citing workload concerns. We spoke to Haris about this tour two days ago, and he gave his consent to playing Tests for Pakistan. However, he changed his mind last night and didn't want to be a part of this Australia Test series,” Wahab had claimed.