Karachi: Former Pakistan captain Younis Khan is apparently miffed at being demoted in the new central contracted list of players announced by the Cricket Board (PCB) on Friday.
Sources close to Younis said he was not happy at being demoted from category A to B while other players like Shahid Afridi, Mohammad Hafeez, Junaid Khan and Saeed Ajmal were given the top category with captain Misbah-ul-Haq.
"Obviously he is not happy with the situation and indications are he has not signed the contract as yet," one source told PTI. PCB officials have justified the decision to demote Younis on the grounds that he was now just being selected for Test matches and has not been picked for ODIs since March, 2013 while he himself retired from T20 internationals in 2009.
The source said Younis had also taken the demotion as a message from the national selectors that he was no longer in the run to play ODIs even though the senior batsmen only recently said he was keen to make the 2015 World Cup squad. "Younis remains one of our most valuable players and a key figure in the Test side. But whether he will be picked for the ODI side or not is something I can`t answer. This should be asked to the chief selector," Zakir Khan a senior official of the PCB, who was also involved in finalising the list of central contracts.
Interestingly, another source said while the board had kept one set of principles for Younis it was adopting a different principle for other players.
"Afridi has not played Test matches since 2010, Hafeez was recently dropped as T20 captain and also from the Test side while Junaid Khan has sparingly played T20 matches and is still pretty junior yet they are in category A while Younis despite his seniority, fitness and performances is demoted," he noted.
Younis emerged as one of the fittest players in the summer national training camp held in Lahore for a month. This is not the first time that Younis has not been in agreement with some decisions of the PCB.
Interestingly, while still facing some criticism over its criteria for awarding central contracts to the players, the PCB today went ahead and announced central contracts for some 22 women players -- a move many feel is a waste of money at this stage. Ironically even a player like Bismah Maroof, who announced her retirement recently, has also been given a three month contract in recognition of her services to Pakistan cricket.