At a time when the Pakistan cricket team are struggling to find their feet against Australia in the ongoing first Test of the two-match series at the Gabba, Wasim Akram lashed out at Mohammad Amir for turning his back to his country and finding the easy way out.
Despite showing some promise in the practice match against Australia A, the young Pakistani pace attack, consisting of 19-year-old Shaheen Afridi and 16-year-old debutant Naseem Shah, have been subjected to the brutality of the Australian batsmen.
In the unavailability of an experienced campaigner in the bowling unit, Akram came out hard against Amir for choosing to not be a part of the Test team for this tour. He blamed the pacer’s immature retirement and also the absence of Wahab Riaz as the reason for Pakistan’s dismal performance.
“What really happened was that two of our premium bowlers [Amir, Wahab] just retired from Test cricket. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and the whole country invested five years in Amir,” Akram was quoted as saying to FOX Cricket.
“He’s 27 and should have come here and played a Test series and then maybe next year retired. That’s the problem Pakistan had,” he added.
Though not sounding too much critical in case of Riaz, the former Pakistani bowler even went on the extent to say that the PCB should terminate Amir’s central contract.
“Wahab Riaz, I’m all for him, he’s 35 years of age, OK he retired from Test cricket, fair enough. But Mohammad Amir, the Pakistan board and the whole country invested five years in him. If I was the Pakistan Cricket Board, I wouldn’t have given him a central contract because he retired a month ago,” Akram said.
27-year-old Amir returned to international cricket in 2016 after serving the five-year ban handed to him for his involvement in spot-fixing during a Test match in Pakistan’s Tour of England in 2010.
In the last few years, he emerged as his country’s leading bowler in across formats. But his retirement from red-ball cricket has shocked as he was expected to hold the baton of Pakistani bowling in the ICC World Test Championship.