I was out of the national team just because of Mickey Arthur: Wahab Riaz

I was out of the national team just because of Mickey Arthur: Wahab Riaz

Mickey Arthur always felt Wahab Riaz wasn't fit.

Mickey Arthur and Wahab Riaz
Mickey Arthur and Wahab Riaz. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Wahab Riaz is an epitome of what you call an enigma. Just like the country that he represents, one never knows what they are gonna get from the left-arm pacer. On his day, he’ll bamboozle the opposition batting-unit with his relentless pace and accuracy while on others, he’d get carted around the park like an amateur.

Riaz is currently leading the Peshawar Zalmi unit in the ongoing Pakistan Super League. The left-armer played a crucial role in Peshawar Zalmi claiming their first win under his leadership when he claimed 3/21 against defending champions Quetta Gladiators on Thursday.

Riaz’s international career has been a stop-start one. The left-hander, who retired from Test cricket post the 2019 World Cup, has opened up on the ordeal that he faced after Mickey Arthur had dropped him from the set-up back in 2017.

In a recently held interview, Riaz alleged that Arthur demoted him from the central contract and despite his performance being better than Mohammad Amir, it was him who was dropped from the set-up, “Mickey Arthur always felt I wasn’t fit and not a match-winner. I came up with better performances than Mohammad Aamir but Mickey demoted me in central contract & because of him I was out of the team from 2017 to 2019, it was pure injustice for me from Arthur’s side,” Wahab Riaz said in an interview to Samaa TV.

Wahab Riaz spent two years on the sidelines during Mickey’s tenure

Wahab Riaz was dropped from the set-up after Pakistan’s demoralizing loss at the hands of India in the league stage of the 2017 Champions Trophy. Riaz was constantly ignored by the Arthur-led management and when asked about the reason why the left-hander is out of favor, Mickey had shot back, saying that Wahab hasn’t won a game for Pakistan for two years.

“He has not won a game in two years. I expect players that have been around for a long time to be winning us games and setting standards. Otherwise, we will invest in younger players who have long futures. We have good youngsters around. [Dropping] Wahab is a big decision but we have chosen a squad according to the time of year, country and conditions. The guys need to push themselves and get out of their comfort zones,” Arthur had said back in 2017 as quoted by ESPNCricinfo.

However, as luck would have it, Riaz was recalled in the side for the 2019 World Cup at the 11th hour by the same Arthur-led management.