Malik, Yousuf careers sinking into oblivion?


LAHORE – Former captains Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Yousuf’s decision to play in the Bangladesh Cricket League has irked the national selectors who believe the former captains’ should have kept their focus on domestic events rather than foreign ventures.
One of the selectors was reported to have said that they were surprised by the players’ move at a time when they should have been trying to regain their place in the Pakistan team after being ignored for the World Cup. Malik was not cleared for selection by the integrity committee of the Pakistan Cricket Board while Yousuf was ignored for the ongoing New Zealand tour and for the World Cup because of fitness problems.
“Why think about going to Bangladesh in the first place when the domestic season is on and any performance will count for both the players in their bid to make a comeback in the national team,” a source close to the selectors said. The source said that the selectors would speak to the PCB about Malik’s decision to play in Bangladesh as the domestic one-day championship is in progress.
Interestingly, after rejecting Malik’s application initially, the PCB later gave permission to the cricketer to go and play in Bangladesh. The source also noted that Yousuf had gone to play in Bangladesh even before the World Cup squad was finalised. “His (Yousuf) preference to play in Bangladesh over domestic cricket may have gone against him during the World Cup team selection,” he said.
“Yousuf’s decision to play in Bangladesh left the selectors with an impression that he preferred money over the country,” he added. Yousuf, one of Pakistan’s most celebrated cricketers, was also banned and fined during a domestic one-day match recently for leaving the venue early and violating the PCB dress code. But sources close to both the players claim that they had lost faith in the selectors.
“Look Malik played diligently in the Quaid-e-Azam trophy for PIA and also in the final and was a top performer in the competition yet he was overlooked because the board didn’t give him clearance. “So why shouldn’t he go now and make some extra money in the Bangladesh league,” one source said.