Salman Butt deserves a recall, says Waqar
Waqar was Pakistan's coach during the infamous Lord's Test in 2010, when Butt was found guilty of orchestrating the delivery of no-balls from fast bowlers Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif. All three of them served bans, but only Amir returned to the national team since.
Waqar said he was in favour of Butt returning based on his recent domestic form, which included two centuries in the final of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy that helped his team win their maiden title.
"He was playing really well and also he has served his sentence and punishment and I feel personally that everyone deserves a go," Waqar said to BT Sport. "People are going to have different views. He is a good player, he is playing really well."
Speaking to ESPNcricinfo during the first-class final, Butt had reiterated his desire to play for Pakistan again.
"I am knocking very hard on selectors' doors," Butt had said after the second day's play. "I don't want to break [down] but I want to keep myself fit and keep my form alive. With my wisdom, I am trying my best with the best of my intention. Being selected isn't my choice, it's they [the selectors] who have to decide. I have a wish and always want to be in every squad. I have the capacity but that is something the selectors have to tell and decide."
After the Asia Cup earlier this year, Waqar, Pakistan's coach at the time, had intended to include Butt in the World T20 squad, an idea that was turned down by PCB chairman Shaharyar Khan. The PCB wanted Butt to play an entire first-class season to prove his fitness, form and utility.
Butt was the second highest run-getter in the National T20 Cup this year, scoring 350 runs in eight innings. He followed that up with 749 runs at 49.40 in the first-class season. However, the PCB has been reluctant so far in the case of both Butt and Asif, and haven't shown them the same leniency that was granted to Amir.