'Naseem constantly complained but medical team didn't take it seriously': PAK great hammers PCB for World Cup 'disaster'

Sep 29, 2023 02:06 AM IST

Naseem Shah was ruled out of the 2023 World Cup with a shoulder injury, with Hasan Ali replacing the youngster.

Pakistan cricket team landed in India on Wednesday to take part in the 2023 World Cup, recieving a grand welcome in Hyderabad. Led by Babar Azam, the team spent a significant amount of time in Hyderabad after departing from Dubai, where they had a lengthy nine-hour layover. Flying from Lahore in the early hours of Wednesday, they arrived in Hyderabad during the night. Pakistan is scheduled to play their initial warm-up match against New Zealand on September 29, followed by a clash with Australia on October 3.

Pakistan's Naseem Shah, left, gestures as he unsuccessfully appeals for the wicket of India's Rohit Sharma(AP)
Pakistan's Naseem Shah, left, gestures as he unsuccessfully appeals for the wicket of India's Rohit Sharma(AP)

Their tournament opener will take place against the Netherlands in Hyderabad (October 6), with a subsequent match against Sri Lanka scheduled for October 10. Pakistan were among the last of the teams participating in the World Cup to announce their 15-member squad, partly due to a major injury right before the tournament in star pacer Naseem Shah. The right-armer, part of the star fast bowling trio including Shaheen Afridi and Haris Rauf, faced a shoulder injury during the Asia Cup and was subsequently ruled out of the marquee tournament in India.

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Former Pakistan wicketkeeper-batter Moin Khan has now opened up on Naseem's injury, revealing that the star pacer had been “constantly complaining” about the problem but the medical team continued to ignore it.

“Naseem's injury is a disaster of Pakistan's team medical panel and physiotherapist. Because he has been constantly complaining that he is having problem since three to four months yet they were continuously playing him. A player would always wish to not get dropped but when he is telling you about his injury, you have to take it very seriously. The medical panel didn't take it seriously. This was a recipe for disaster,” Moin told Cricket Pakistan.

Moin did, however, state that Hasan Ali was the best option for Pakistan following Naseem's injury-forced absence.

“The authorities in PCB should task them [medical panel] because we suffered a great loss ahead of World Cup when Naseem was in form and was bowling extraordinarily. And which is why now we have to take Hasan Ali. Hasan Ali is an experienced bowler, who has been through similar circumstances. From that point of view, this decision is suitable and Hasan Ali's selection is justified.”

No pressure, says Babar

Ahead of the team's departure, Babar had spoken about his excitement over playing in India especially Ahmedabad where the arch-rivals lock horns in front of a one lakh plus crowd.

"Although we have not played in India before, we are not taking too much pressure. We have done our research and we have heard the conditions are similar to how they play out in other Asian countries," said Babar in the pre-departure media conference.

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