ISLAMABAD     -      Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) head coach-cum-chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq has once again proved his incompetence while announcing suspicious squads for the upcoming Australian Test and three T20I matches.

The selections prove that Misbah is not in a mood to use common sense and give chances to the deserving players. The selection of Usman Qadir raises serious questions on Misbah’s professionalism as whether he and his company are trying to compensate Usman for the great loss of legendary Abdul Qadir or take attention off from Qadir’s highly unfortunate death? If this is not the case, then the PCB and Misbah must reveal the criteria of selecting Usman in the T20 squad.

Why out-of-form Muhammad Rizwan was preferred over consistent performer Kamran Akmal and former captain Salman Butt, who had scored lots of runs in domestic cricket, was once again overlooked? Why Musa Khan, Hussnain, Imran Khan Senior, Iftikhar Ahmed, Wahab Riaz, Naseem, Khushdil Shah, M Irfan, Kashif Bhatti, Fakhar Zaman, under-performing Imam-ul-Haq and Shan Masood were selected? Why Sarfraz Ahmed, who had been useful in the shorter format of the game, and Fawad Alam, who had scored tons of runs in domestic cricket, were excluded from the squads?

These questionable selections by Misbah will haunt Pakistan cricket for a long period. The way Misbah was given three roles by PCB Cricket Committee chief Wasim Khan indicates that PCB top brass lacks leadership qualities and just wants to dictate terms. They are not following merit and answerable to anyone, including Prime Minister Imran Khan. Ever since the PM has taken over the reins of the country, the national cricket team has gone from bad to worse.

Misbah is not in a mood to make merit-based selections, rather he is in hurry to accommodate all his fellows. After the disgraceful loss against under-strength Sri Lankan team, it was hoped that the PCB will wake up and warn Misbah. But the board kept on sleeping and gave free hand to the chief selectors for such a bad selection.

The national cricket team is in need of a dynamic and aggressive opening pair, unlike of Fakhar and Imam. It was ideal time to include Kamran Akmal and Salman Butt in the longer version of the game and youngster Rohail Nazir, who is scoring lots of runs in domestic circuit, in the shorter format. Another deserving and emerging cricketer Ali Imran, who is regarded as a genuine replacement of all-rounder Abdul Razzaq, has been deprived as his only crime was that he is from Islamabad, where genuine talent is always ignored.

If Shadab Khan, Yasir Shah, Wahab, Mohammad Amir, Fakhar, Shan and others can get countless opportunities, why not Fawad, Sarfraz and Ali can get calls from the PCB. Why is the top brass of PCB not in a mood to change their mentality? How long Misbah and company will play with the future of deserving players and Pak cricket? Why PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani is silent on these issues? Why did Mani give unlimited powers to Wasim Khan? Mani must answer these questions, as players and fans from the entire country are looking at him for justice.