Yousuf not ready to face England, Akmal dropped

London: Pakistan batsman Mohammad Yousuf will not play in the second Test against England on Friday due to jetlag.

Yousuf, Pakistan`s third-highest scoring Test batsman and highest of the current squad, arrived in Birmingham less than a day before start of the five-day Test match at Edgbaston.

"Yousuf has not been picked for the Test as he has just reached Birmingham after a long flight from Karachi," team manager Yawar Saeed said.

"The tour selectors felt it would be better if Yousuf had time to adjust to the conditions and also play in the tour match before the third Test."

Former captain Yousuf was drafted into the squad on Sunday, despite having been banned by the Pakistan Cricket Board, after his country`s crushing 354-run first Test defeat when they were bowled out for their lowest-ever Test total against England of 80.

Pakistan have dropped wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal and brought in uncapped Zulqarnain Haider in his place for the second Test while spinner Saeed Ajmal replaces Danish Kaneria.

Yousuf had earlier told reporters that he did not expect to be thrust straight into the side.

"I think it would be difficult not just for me but for any player in the world to just arrive and tomorrow play cricket," he said.

"It`s not good for the team if I am a little bit... (tired). I think I need another three or four days of practice and a little bit of training and play the next Test.

"I only arrived at three `o` clock and to play less than 20 hours later and adjust to the time difference as well is very difficult," he added.

"My flight was over ten hours from Lahore to Karachi, Karachi to Dubai and then Dubai to Birmingham. It was a very hectic flight. I have more chance of (playing in the third Test at) The Oval."

Yousuf, who was handed a one-year ban for his role in undermining morale during the dismal tour of Australia this year, said he had watched the humiliating first Test on television at his Lahore residence.

The 35-year-old has played 88 Test matches and averaged 53 and 70 in his 12 Tests against England but he did not think past experience was enough to rely on in getting him through the match.

"Every Test match is a new game and although I have experience I have to give respect to England and to my team mates," he added. "I need to time to adjust."

He declined to comment on the nature of his call-up or whether he expected to play Test cricket again but said he was "happy to be back with the boys" and wanted to work with and help a relatively young team.

"They are very talented, energetic youngsters and day by day will improve and can be good for Pakistan in the future. They just need experience," he added.

Team: Salman Butt (captain), Imran Farhat, Azhar Ali, Umar Amin, Umar Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Zulqarnain Haider, Mohammad Asif, Mohammad Aamer, Umar Gul, Saeed Ajmal.

Bureau Report

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