All the fascinating debate on whether or not Salim Malik is a rich man
or SHane Warne is a cheat or whatever else got me to thinking how
Salim Malik fits into the Pakistan side...
And it looks to me that Pakistan have a bit of a dilemma in selecting
a Test match XI.
Assuming the bowling attack will consist of Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis,
Aaquib Javed and most probably Saqlain Mushtaq (who looked a good
prospect against SL I thought - and what's more also looked a lot
closer to 19 than Ata, but that's another matter :-) ), there is place
for six batsmen and a 'keeper. And here's where the fun begins I reckon.
The seven batsmen in contention are: Aamir Sohail, Saeed Anwar, Saleem
Elahi, Rameez Raja, Salim Malik, Basit Ali and Inzamam ul-Haq. And of
these, I'd say only Inzamam's name goes down in ink at this stage (and
perhaps Aamir Sohail, great all-rounder that he has become :) ). Any
of the others could conceivably be left out.. So how does one make the
Rameez has got to play now. I was admittedly surprised when he was
recalled, but he's been captain, been sacked and scored runs in the
interim. No way can he not play.
Basit is still supposedly the big new hope, and IMO he is a big talent
with the bat. He's got to have a very strong case for his inclusion.
Aamir Sohail and Saeed Anwar are the almost-set-in-stone opening pair.
Can't possibly drop either of them. Sure, Saeed ANwar was injured, but
a la Sidhu, now that he's back, he's earnt his place and deserves it.
Saleem Elahi has shone like nobody's business since breaking onto the
scene. Seems awfully harsh to drop him now.
And Salim Malik. Well, there's absolutely no doubt that he has to be
in the side. If only to prove a point or ten at that...
so who doesn't play (assuming all these guys have decent run-ins to
the Tests)? Looks to me to be a toss up between Saleem Elahi and Basit
Ali, and I suspect that Basit will miss out to begin with. And I'm not
sure I like it one bit. Maybe they should play 7 batsmen with Aamir
Sohail as the 4th bowler :-)
And as for the 'keepers position.. two highly qualified candidates.
But this time I think it's clear that the incumbent stays. Rashid
Latif will have to sit in the shadows methinks.
Looking forward to this series........
Rohan [ what's with this ***y rain in Madras anyway? ] Chandran.