Pakistan to pick only an ‘up to the mark’ Amir against England, coach Waqar

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No player is indispensable and Pakistan will pick Mohammad Amir against England only if the bowler is “up to the mark,” bowling coach Waqar Younis has said.

Amir had initially pulled out of the tour but is set to join the Pakistan squad in England following the birth of his second daughter last week.

Waqar suggested Amir, whose test retirement last year irked the team management, could not take his place for granted in England where Pakistan are scheduled to play three tests and as many Twenty20 Internationals from August 5.

“The doors are never shut for anyone even if they have played for Pakistan or (are) yet to play,” Waqar told in an online interaction with reporters on Tuesday.

“He is a seasoned bowler and at times it did hurt when he left test cricket at a crucial time and we all expressed our displeasure on it.

“But we have moved on and we have to see where he stands. If he’s up to the mark, then we will pick him and play him. But nobody is indispensable. I never thought we couldn’t function without one cricketer.”

Jolted by the crafty left-arm quick’s shock test retirement, former captain Waqar oversaw the creation of a bigger pace pool, which includes pace mainstay Shaheen Afridi and the exciting teenager Naseem Shah.

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Waqar said the youngsters could learn from Amir’s experience.

“In a way it’s actually good that he came and young players can actually learn from him,” said Waqar, himself a formidable swing bowler of his era.

“But we will prioritize those who are doing well, and they are definitely going to get a go. With 29 players here, there’s a good healthy competition and that’s a great luxury.”

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