Pakistan bowlers Amir and Riaz lose contracts | Sunday Observer

Pakistan bowlers Amir and Riaz lose contracts

Mohammad Amir
Mohammad Amir

Pakistan fast bowlers Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz have lost their central contracts after the pair decided to focus on white-ball cricket, officials said as selectors promote younger pacemen.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) also confirmed Azhar Ali as Test captain and Babar Azam as one-day and Twenty20 captain for the upcoming season starting in July.

Eighteen players in three categories received central contracts guaranteeing their monthly salaries and benefits for 12 months.

The exclusion of Amir and Riaz comes as young fast bowlers are given a chance, with 17-year-old pace sensation Naseem Shah included in the “C” category for the first time.

Naseem became the youngest Test bowler in history to take a five-wicket haul in an innings and a hat-trick in consecutive Tests against Sri Lanka (December 2019) and Bangladesh (February 2020) in Karachi and Rawalpindi.

Another young pacer Shaheen Shah was bumped up to the “A” group after he featured in all three formats for Pakistan in the past 12 months. “The selectors have made the tough decisions to leave out Amir and Wahab but considering Amir and Wahab decided to focus on white-ball cricket this was the right move,” chief selector and head coach Misbah-ul-Haq said.