Kamran Akmal, the wicketkeeper batsman, has blamed the Pakistan Cricket Board for keeping him out of reckoning despite performing well in domestic cricket and the Pakistan Super League. Akmal, 38, who last played for Pakistan more than three years ago – in 2017 – is PSL’s leading run-scorer with 1537 runs from 55 innings and holds the record for the fastest half-century, most dismissals overall (44) and in a single season (12).
Peshwar Zalmi’s Akmal has also scored the maximum hundreds in the history of PSL. In 2019, Akmal was the second-highest run-scorer with 357 runs and during the 2018 season, blasted 425 runs at an average of 38.63 and strike-rate of more than 150. The recent season was a bit of a letdown form Akmal with 251 runs from nine innings, but it included a blistering knock of 101 off 55 balls against Quetta Gladiators.
“I have been performing in domestic cricket and PSL during the last five years but despite that I have not been given a chance to play for Pakistan. In the recent past, couple of coaches did not like me which is why I remained on the sidelines,” Kamran said on the ‘Inside Out’ show on Cricket Pakistan.
“It’s unfair to keep me out of the Test and T20I side, especially, because I can play solely as a batsman. If Matthew Wade can make a comeback with an average of 18-20, why not me who averages nearly 60.”
On his brother Umar’s suspension, Kamran felt the wicketkeeper batsman could have been dealt better by the captain and other members of the team management. In April, Umar was banned from all forms of cricket for three years after pleading guilty to failing to report match-fixing approaches, and citing example of a former Pakistan captain, Kamran believes things could have turned out differently for his brother had the Umar been handled more efficiently.
“Off the field activities in nothing new in Pakistan cricket,” Kamran said. “Team management and the captain should know how to deal with such players. Look at the way Inzy Bhai [Inzamam] handled Shoaib [Akhtar], Asif and Shahid [Afridi]. If the same was done with Umar Akmal, things would have turned out differently.”