Shan blames inconsistent selection for his modest record

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LAHORE: Cricketer Shan Masood has lamented he had not been able to show true mettle as Test opener because of inconsistent selection for the longest format.

Talking to media during the national pre-season training camp here, Shan said: “I have played just 15 matches in six years, which is an ample proof of the inconsistency. How can people ask me about my performance if I haven’t played a big number of matches on regular basis?

“In other teams a cricketer gets around [at least] 30 matches in a six-year period but I played just 15 Tests, which is only 2.5 per year,” he complained while talking to Dawn in Lahore.

But when asked how could good cricketers grab chances like Steve Smith and Misbah-ul-Haq did, while he made comeback on several occasions without cementing down his place, Shan said: “It is not fair to compare someone like me with Steve Smith or that that matter initial phase of Misbah’s career. The case of Misbah was not only of continuity but he was also late bloomer.

“The evaluation of a cricketer’s performance should be taken when he had played a significant number of matches with continuity,” he asserted.

Shan, meanwhile, expressed the hope that Pakistan would also host Sri Lanka for a Test series in the country later this year after the teams decided to play three One-day International and as many T20 matches in Karachi and Lahore, respectively.

He said the performance of Pakistani players suffered a lot because of staging of home series in the UAE, while adding the cricketers in other countries do exceptionally well when playing in their own backyards.

To a question that his name was touted as the next Test captain in the circles, Shan said it was just media speculation and added he was available to play for Pakistan but his priority was to perform for the country.

Shan had scored 793 at 26.43 with one century — 125 against Sri Lanka at Pallekele in 2015 when Pakistan chased down a formidable target of 377 — in his 15 Tests, while the left-hander also figured in five One-day Internationals.