PCB Chairman Shaharyar Khan Assures Investigation After Umar Akmal’s Fitness Drama
The Umar Akmal fitness fiasco has prompted Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan to mull over a serious investigation into the matter.
The middle order batsman was recently sacked from Pakistan squad for ICC Champions Trophy with immediate effect’ after failing the fitness test during Pakistan’s training session in Birmingham.
It was the second instance in two months where Akmal failed to prove his fitness. Earlier, he was left out of the team during the tour of West Indies. The drama involving Akmal has raised doubts about the quality of work at the National Cricket Academy and has also reportedly created a rift between Pakistan head coach Mickey Arthur and chief selector Inzamam ul Haq.
“It’s a matter of concern for us. We will investigate this matter to fix responsibility. We have to see if Umar really got unfit after reaching England or his test taken in Pakistan had flaws,” the chairman told media persons here at the Parliament House where he came to attend a meeting of Senate’s Standing Committee on Inter-provincial Coordination, which could not be held due to a shortage of quorum.
He said the PCB had a clear policy that unfit players would not be included in the squad. On Tuesday, he was replaced by Harish Sohail and it was said that the process involved heavy expenses, as the PCB had to bear expenses for Haris’ fitness test and Umar’s boarding and lodging.
Initially, Akmal was the only player to be declared unfit during the short conditioning camp in Lahore before the West Indies tour. But, Dr Saboor at the NCA announced him fit making him eligible for the tour. Later, however, the cricketer could not pass the tests and was dropped.
The selectors for some reasons recalled him for the Champions Trophy where Coach Arthur, dissatisfied with the NCA tests, ordered the Pakistan team trainer, to take a second fitness test after Umar arrived in England.
According to insiders, Dr Saboor conducted the test in presence of chief selector Inzamam, who was keen to pick Umar for the Champions Trophy.
Shaharyar further said he would not contest for PCB chairmanship again,
“I have decided not to contest polls for the chairmanship.”
He added that the Board would consult Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan in few days about their next assignment.
“We will take complete advantage of their experience and have decided to hold detailed discussions with them before taking a final decision,” he said.
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