LONDON - Former Pakistan head coach Waqar Younis believes if he was middle-order batsman Umar Akmal, he would be ashamed after being sent back from the Champions Trophy due to bad fitness.

Umar, 27, was asked to leave for Pakistan from the training camp in Birmingham when he failed to pass two fitness tests and all-rounder Haris Sohail was sent as his replacement to join the squad.

 “To be blunt, the whole thing was just bizarre and should not have happened,” the 87-Test veteran told Sky Sports. “It has damaged the reputation of Pakistan and Pakistan cricket. Something has gone wrong and it’s difficult to blame Umar, or the selectors, or (head coach) Mickey Arthur until complete facts are known.”

Waqar said the Pakistan Cricket Board should (PCB) should find out how was an unfit player sent with the squad. “The Pakistan Cricket Board needs to dig deep and uncover what went on and to resolve this issue to ensure it does not happen again,” he said. “Whoever is responsible for this episode needs to own up and take responsibility.”

Former right-arm pacer then highlighted the reason why Umar was never able to convert all his potential into big runs. “Umar is his own worst enemy,” the former quick said. “He doesn’t want to work hard, he doesn’t want to put in the effort, he doesn’t want to get fit, and it’s embarrassing.”

He continued that Umar did not do justice with the talent bestowed upon him. “He should be thoroughly ashamed that Arthur and the coaching staff have had to send him back to Pakistan,” said Waqar. “Umar should look in the mirror and tell himself, ‘In future I will sort this out’. Will he do it? I’m not sure that he will, as there have been many incidents involving him throughout his career. That is why the talent has not blossomed. He has not done justice to himself.”

Umar was thrown out of the national team during Waqar’s tenure as the head coach on the basis of disciplinary problems however he did make comebacks after that but to no good use for the team. Waqar thinks everyone related to Pakistan cricket was always kind to Umar and that is why he never managed his problems.

“I think the PCB, the coaches and the selectors have been very kind to Umar as they keep giving him the opportunities because everyone wants to see him succeed and do well at the international level,” he said.

“I guess he’s happy with what he’s doing but if this was me, I would feel ashamed.”

Umar, after being dropped from the Champions Trophy squad and sent back to Pakistan to focus on his fitness, said that he is determined to come back stronger than ever. “I apologise to all the fans who have been hurt by my conduct,” Akmal was quoted by ESPNcricinfo. “I still have a lot of cricket left in me and I aim to be back stronger than ever. I am even more focused on cricket now.

He added that he will try to follow batting legend Younus Khan as his role model. “My role model is Younus bhai, and even when he faced difficulties, he became even more determined. I am now determined to come back more than ever.”