Inzamam-ul-Haq indicates Mohammad Amir recalled keeping World Cup in mind

Pakistan will play the Proteas in a five-match ODI series after the Tests.

Mohammad Amir of Pakistan
Mohammad Amir. (Photo by Philip Brown/Getty Images)

Pakistan on Wednesday recalled fast bowler Mohammad Amir in their 16-member squad for the five-game ODI series against South Africa starting January 19. Amir, who served a ban in the past because of spot-fixing, has failed to pick a single wicket in his last five ODI matches and was overlooked for the side’s three-match ODI series in the UAE against New Zealand. His inclusion was based on his good show with the ball in the ongoing Test series against South Africa.

The left-arm pacer picked two four-wicket hauls even though Pakistan lost the three-match series with a game to go. Five changes were made to the Pakistan squad for the ODIs, the country’s cricket board said even as the visitors led by Sarfraz Ahmed prepared for the dead rubber starting in Johannesburg on January 11. Pakistan and South Africa have clashed 73 times in ODIs till now with the Proteas having 47-25 lead with one game remaining inconclusive.

“Asad Shafiq, Azhar Ali, Haris Sohail, Mohammad Abbas and Yasir Shah have been replaced by Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Hussain Talat, Usman Shinwari and Imad Wasim, respectively,” said a PCB release.

Chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq, one of the brightest names in Pakistan cricket, said the squad for the ODIs was selected keeping the upcoming ICC World Cup in May-July in mind.

Squad picked keeping World Cup in mind

“While selecting the squad, we have tried to maintain consistency, taking into consideration player performances in white-ball cricket as well as looking ahead to the upcoming ODI challenges, including the World Cup,” First Cricket cited reports quoting Inzamam, who had played a key role in Pakistan’s only World Cup victory in 1992, as saying.

He also added that Amir’s strong performance in the Test made him an “automatic” pick for the ODIs. Among others who called their maiden ODI calls for Pakistan are batsman Shan Masood and all-rounder Hussain Talat. Masood has already been in the Test squad.

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