KARACHI: Terming the criticism on the selection of wicketkeeper Mohammad Salman in the Test squad unjust, former Pakistan captain Rashid Latif said the critics failed to realise the fact that an experienced keeper is the key to any team’s good show in the matches.
“It is the most important slot, wicketkeeper is the man who controls the whole game and you need an experienced guy to handle the pressure and act accordingly,” said Rashid in a statement on Wednesday.
“The criticism on his (Salman’s) selection is simply baseless.”
The former wicket-keeper also quoted an example from the football setup, where experience is given priority over the age.
“Wicketkeeper in cricket is as important as the goalkeeper in football,” argued Rashid.
“Manchester United is the most successful football club and their goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar is almost 40 years old and still going strong. Interestingly, after his decision to retire recently, the club is looking for an experienced goalie of around 35 to replace him.
“It’s all about the right approach, not the age,” added Rashid.
“When I made a comeback for the England tour in 2000, I was 32, and a lot was said against me,” recalled Rashid.
“However, I proved everyone wrong with my performance. If all is to be decided on the age then the accurate age of every player should be taken into consideration,” added Rashid.
On the role of the selection committee, the former skipper minced no words in claiming that the incumbent committee is nothing more than a bunch of “yes men”, adding that the PCB chairman is the man who was actually calling the shots.
“The role of the selection committee is disappointing, they have been making blunders. Even before the West Indies trip the selection for the World Cup was questionable,” he maintained.
When asked if he will take up the chief selector’s post if offered, Rashid said: “Yes, I am available for the post of selection committee chairman.”—Agencies