LAHORE: The Pakistan Cricket Board has withdrawn fast bowler Naseem Shah from next month’s Under-19 Cricket World Cup to be played in South Africa from January 17 to February 9.
The National Junior Selector Committee, headed by Saleem Jaffar, has named Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Mohammad Wasim Jnr as Naseem’s replacement. Wasim took three wickets each in the ACC Asia Cup and on the tour of South Africa. He bagged seven wickets on the tour of Sri Lanka. On the domestic circuit, he played one under-19 one-day match in which he bagged three wickets. He snapped up seven wickets in three under-19 three-day matches.
PCB Chief Executive Wasim Khan said: “The ICC U19 Cricket World Cup is a stepping stone for future stars and a platform for budding youngsters to graduate to international cricket. Naseem has recently broken that glass ceiling and has established his credentials as an international cricketer.
“As such, the PCB has taken a pragmatic approach and decided to withdraw him from next year’s competition to provide this opportunity to another promising cricketer.
“This should not deter Pakistan’s chances at next year’s ICC U19 Cricket World Cup as the selectors have picked a side that is experienced and bubbling with confidence to perform strongly.
“Naseem will now remain in Pakistan and continue to work on his skills under the watchful eyes of bowling coach Waqar Younis. Furthermore, he will remain available for the home series against Bangladesh,” the PCB CEO said.