Pakistan cricket January 23, 2009

Waqar wants Shoaib to quit Tests

Cricinfo staff


Shoaib Akhtar failed to complete his quota of ten overs and conceded over six-an-over in the two ODIs against Sri Lanka © AFP
 

Waqar Younis, the former Pakistan captain and fast bowler, has advised Shoaib Akhtar to give up Test cricket in a bid to prolong his international career by concentrating more on ODIs and Twenty20 cricket. Shoaib Akhtar returned to the ODI fold in the three-match series against Sri Lanka at home, and struggled to impress in the first two matches, failing to bowl his full quota of ten overs and cutting down significantly on his pace.

His below-par performance - he conceded more than six-an-over in both games - also drew criticism from his captain Shoaib Malik, who questioned his fitness and commitment.

"I know he has said he wants to play on for another three or four years. But I don't think he can now handle the pressures and demands of five-day cricket," Waqar told PTI. "He is a very good bowler but I think he would be well advised to restricting his career to one-day and Twenty20 matches that way I can see him carry on for another two or three years.

"You can't always bowl consistently at a pace of around 145 and 150 kph. Age and time takes a toll on the body and I think Shoaib can still serve Pakistan cricket by taking some tough decisions about his bowling and choice of matches."

Waqar, like Malik, felt there was enough talent in the domestic circuit which deserves to be tried on the international stage. "I don't think there is going to be any problem with our pace bowling resources in future. And the already established bowlers including Shoaib will face stiff competition in future so it is better they adjusted accordingly in the team."

He also expressed an interest to work with them as either a bowling coach or a consultant if the Pakistan board approaches him to do so.

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