ISLAMABAD - Former Pakistan cricket team chief selector and head coach Mohsin Hassan Khan has said that the team selection for the World Cup is totally based on nepotism and it will mar the green caps’ chances in the mega event.

Talking to The Nation, Mohsin said: “It is understood that nine to 10 players got automatic selection due to their performances, while selection of remaining five to six players was the real task and very important for a chief selector to pick. I am sorry to say that the team management completely missed the golden opportunity of finalizing the world cup-bound squad during the UAE series both against Australia and New Zealand.

I am quite astonished to witness the name of Yasir Shah in the 15-member squad selected for the mega event. Yasir should have played one-day matches both against Australia and New Zealand, despite recalling him from Pakistan, the chief selector never bothered to include him in at least 2 or 3 matches against Black Caps and now all of a sudden, he was included in the world cup squad, which is quite amazing.”

Mohsin said the same was the case with Sohail Khan. “If Sohail is such an important player, then why he was completely ignored for the Australia and New Zealand series. The selectors and the PCB were fully aware from the last 3 to 4 months that there is a big question mark on spin wizard Saeed Ajmal's inclusion in the world cup squad due to suspected bowling action, but no heed was paid and his replacement was not found it. If there was not a single off spinners’ name in the chief selectors mind then he had best option in the shape of vastly experienced left arm spinner Zulfiqar Babar, Raza Hassan and Abdul Rehman. One of them should have been picked as specialist spinner in the squad, because spinners always provide wickets in the middle of the innings. Now who will play that crucial role for the team in the absence of a specialist spinner, as part timers can't be trusted for such mega events to provide breakthroughs.”

“I have full sympathies with Sohail Khan but I am quite surprised that Umar Gul was over utilized, which resulted him out of the world cup. Same is the case with Junaid Khan and M Irfan, as both were highly misused. Thanks God, both of them are now recovered and available for the selection, otherwise, Pakistan team could have suffered a lot. I pray these fast bowlers remain fit for the entire world cup, otherwise, Pakistan team’s chances will suffer badly,” he added.

Mohsin said after missing the golden opportunity of finalizing the squad for world cup during Australia and New Zealand series, the selectors relied on Pentangular Cup to finalise the squad, but so many performances were completely ignored. “A few examples are Azhar Ali, Fawad Alam and Asad Shafiq, as they performed exceptionally but were overlooked, which is quite surprising. When one is thinking about national cause, then personal interests should be kept aside.”

“All the major teams of the world mostly rely on all-rounders to deliver for the team, but Pakistan, having natural gifted all-rounders in shape of Anwar Ali and Bilawal Bhatti, didn’t consider any all-rounder for the mega event,” he added.

“Seeing the final squad for the World Cup, it seems personal interests were preferred over national interests which will cost Pakistan team heavily. As a Pakistani, former player, ex-coach and chief selector, my sincere wishes and prayers are with national team. Still, I hope they will do wonder in the mega event with the prayers of entire nation and return home with heads high,” Mohsin concluded.