Karachi: Pakistan cricket team selectors are reportedly considering the option to drop veteran batsman Younis Khan from national ODI squad while asking captain Misbah-ul-Haq to bat at the crucial number three position.
The Pakistan squad for the Australia series in the UAE is to be announced next week, with the series to start with the one-off Twenty20 in Dubai on October 5.
The 36-year-old Younis, who has been confined to Test cricket since early last year, was included in the ODI party for the last series against Sri Lanka where he featured only in the first game of the three-match rubber, scoring three runs in that game at Hambantota, The Dawn reported.
The right-handed batsman in an emergency had to return home owing to the demise of his nephew. Now the selectors have almost decided to axe the 254-ODI veteran from the game's shorter version, citing his poor run of form in ODIs.
With a stack of 7,017 ODI runs featuring six centuries and 48 half-centuries to his credit, Younis remains the most experienced batsman in the present lot of Pakistan players. But the unusual dip in his ODI form has perhaps compelled the selectors to look for other options as the all-important 2015 World Cup nears.
Meanwhile, sources said that the selectors have not succeeded in convincing Misbah to bat at the vital number three spot. They said that for his slow but responsible batting style, Misbah can produce a better show at one-down position, which many believe is crucial in any format but the skipper is not yet convinced.
Sources close to Misbah also said that the skipper believes he is already under some pressure as his performance in the last series against Sri Lanka was sluggish, so a major change in the batting order at this moment, and that too against Australia who are one of the world's best teams, may put him under added pressure, which he cannot afford until the World Cup.