Pakistan will miss the services of its top five players, including the suspended trio of Salman Butt, Mohammed Asif and Mohammed Aamer, in the upcoming cricket World Cup, sources said on Tuesday.
The sources said that International Cricket Council (ICC) has advised the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to not include players under suspicion in its preliminary 30-member squad, which has to be finalised by December 19.
The other two players, who are to likely to miss the bus are stumper Kamran Akmal and leg-spinner Danish Kaneria.
"The advice is not to select these two while the suspended trio of Salman Butt, Muhammad Asif and Muhammad Aamer are also out of contention for the World Cup," one source said.
The source said that the PCB had tried to get clearance for selecting Akmal but did not get a favorable response from the sport's world governing body.
"There is fear in the cricket hierarchy that with doubts still existing over the conduct of Akmal, Kaneria and the suspended trio also under a spot-fixing cloud, these five should not be selected in the World Cup preliminary squad," the source said.
Sources also said that there was also some doubt over former captain Shoaib Malik, who has scored three successive hundreds in the ongoing domestic season.
"There is 50-50 chance of Malik making the preliminary squad but 95 per chance that Akmal and Kaneria are out of contention," the source said.