Butt may go for Haider in place of Akmal in 2nd Test

Karachi: Unhappy with Kamran Akmal’s shoddy show behind the wicket, Pakistan skipper Salman Butt may ask the selectors to replace him with Zulqarnain Haider in the second Test against England.

Akmal missed catching and stumping chances apart from fumbling on many other occasions on the first day of the first Test against England.

“Kamran is going to find it very difficult to hold onto his place in the remaining matches unless he drastically improves his keeping on the remaining days of the first test and bats well,” a team source told reporters.

Sources said Butt is of the view, for a long time, that Akmal was a weak link in the Pakistan team because of his poor keeping skills.

“Butt had told chief selector Mohsin Khan earlier that the selectors needed to seriously look at this weak area as Kamran’s keeping had gone down. But Mohsin told Butt to hang on and wait and watch,” the source said.

“The chief selector assured Butt that the moment he wanted a replacement for Kamran in the Test series in England he would be given one without any questions. But the selectors wanted to give Kamran one final chance because of his superior batting abilities,” the source added.

The second Test will begin from August 6 in Birmingham.

Sources said Akmal was almost dropped for the tour to England but was given one final chance because there was no unanimous consensus on who should replace him.

“The names of Sarfraz Ahmed, Zulqarnain Haider, Adnan Akmal, Salman Ahmed and Gulfraz Sadaf were discussed as possible replacements at the last meeting of the selectors and management but no consensus could be formed and Kamran survived in the team,” the source said.

The 28-year old Kamran who has now played 50 Tests and 115 one-day internationals has also been under the scanner in recent times for alleged links with bookmakers, an allegation he strongly denied.


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