Younis, Misbah to skip PSL if not given captaincy: report

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Former Pakistan Twenty20 captains Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq have voiced their concerns over being excluded from Pakistan Super League’s (PSL) list of iconic players and may skip the tournament if they are not give leadership positions, according to a report.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Wednesday announced its icon players for the upcoming league and both Younis and Misbah were omitted from the list. However, the category included three foreign players.

Pakistan’s only T20 title came under Younis’ leadership in 2009, whereas Test captain Misbah has also captained the side for eight international matches from 2009-2012.

“They are not happy and indications are that they will convey to the board that if they are not given leadership positions in the PSL franchise teams, they may skip it,” the Press Trust of India (PTI) quoted a PCB source as saying.

Younis, who also captained Pakistan in eight T20 internationals, had last week also expressed a desire to take up a managerial role in the PSL which is scheduled to take place in the UAE from February 4-23, 2016.

“I would like to have a leadership position in the PSL like say being captain or mentor besides being a player,” Younis.

Younis and Misbah have both retired from the limited-overs format and only play Test cricket. Both players are considered to have a very good rapport with current players. Last month, the PCB honoured their services to Pakistan cricket by inducting them into the board’s ‘cricket committee’ as advisers to the chairman.

Other than the two batting stalwarts, the PCB has also ignored former T20 captain Mohammad Hafeez from the list of icons which comprises Shahid Afridi, Shoaib Malik, Chris Gayle, Kevin Pietersen and Shane Watson.

“After taking one icon player each, the franchises then can choose players from the platinum, gold, silver and emerging categories,” Nadeem Omar, owner of the Quetta team, said.

The PCB’s preference for foreign players in the list of icons is likely to become another bone of contention within the board after Younis’ inclusion and subsequent retirement from ODIs caused a stir in November.

The 38-year-old Younis, on November 11, quit the 50-over format, after being selected for the first one-day international against England, upon the insistence of chief selector Haroon Rasheed. The selection is reported to have caused divisions inside the dressing room and coach Waqar Younis last week said the abrupt retirement had left a ‘negative impact’ on the squad.

“I gave him the batting position that he wanted and I gave him the guarantee that he would play in all four of the fifty-over matches against England,” Waqar had said.

“He wanted to prove a point and I guess he feels he has proved his point but I feel it wasn’t the right way to do it.”