New Delhi: Senior all-rounder Shoaib Malik said on Wednesday that he was unaware of his exclusion from the Pakistan squad for the New Zealand tour due to “no communication” from the national selection committee.
Last month, the Pakistan Cricket Board announced the combined squad for the New Zealand tour.
However, Malik, who now only plays T20 format, is missing from the jumbo 35-member group.
“If I am not part of the national team, only the chief selector can answer. I have no communication from them but I certainly do not want to (live) on the negative side,” Malik told PTI during a virtual interaction honored by the Lanka Premier League (LPL).
The former skipper, who currently plays for the Jaffna Stallions at the LPL in Sri Lanka, said he was looking forward to more opportunities in his hands.
“I have a good chance in my hands. It’s the Lanka Premier League and my whole focus is on the league and I don’t want to focus on what I don’t have. I played a lot of cricket and I think whatever you have, you have to focus on it.
The all-rounder, who has participated in 35 Tests for Pakistan, 287 ODIs and 116 T20Is, insisted he did not intend to retire anytime soon.
“I have no intention of retiring from this format so far. But let’s see how it goes.”
He said the appointment of 38-year-old Babar Azam as a leader in all three formats was a big step for the PCB but said the board should allow Swashbuckling to lead the batsman on a long-term basis.
“This is a big move the PCB has taken. For the next three years they should declare themselves a leader. They can form their own team for different forms.”
It is important that the board instills confidence that they are there to support Babur during a difficult time.
“The first priority should be to give your leader and players confidence and then we can expect consistent results from them.
“He’s performing well in all three formats. I want him to do the same in leadership.”
Malik praised the organizers of the Lanka Premier League for hosting the tournament amid an epidemic, and said that despite some pull-outs this year, some big names will be competing next year.
“The quality of cricket is very good in the Lanka Premier League. I am sure there will be many more names from next year. These are tough times and we are only using one stadium.
“From next year onwards, we will have more places and crowds when we get out of this epidemic LPL.
“The crowds make things big, but the way the LPL is organized in these tough times is remarkable,” Malik said.
Veteran all-rounder LPL also said it would help to unveil the country’s T20 talents but it is imperative to provide these youngsters with opportunities.
“Whoever starts their own league, we have seen that cricket has improved. This is also the case in Sri Lanka. A lot of players come in but you have this format. You don’t select players for Test cricket.”
These leagues help identify T20 talent in different countries.
“First class cricket is very important and you have to pick players from there but this league gives you T20 players. You have to provide them with consistent opportunities,” Malik said.

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