Pakistan players face fines over lack of fitness

Thursday, 1 May 2014 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

REUTERS: Pakistan players will be fined and face being dropped from the team if they do not meet required fitness standards in new plans designed by the national selection committee to prepare for the 2015 World Cup. Chief Selector Moin Khan said unless players raised their fitness standards and worked on mental strength they would not be able to compete internationally and win big matches. The former captain, who is also the manager of the national side, told a news conference on Tuesday that while the Pakistani players were talented they needed to focus on improving their fitness and mental strength. The selectors announced a list of 36 players who will form the nucleus of the squad for events leading up to the World Cup. Notable omissions were the experienced Abdul Razzaq, Kamran Akmal and Shoaib Malik while openers, Yasir Hameed, Imran Farhat and Taufiq Umar were recalled along with fast bowler Mohammad Sami. “These probables now have to meet standard fitness levels which we will set them. If they don’t they can be fined and be dropped from the side,” national selector and head coach at the national cricket academy Mohammad Akram said. The selectors also named the 7 feet tall left-arm fast bowler Mohammad Irfan who has not played since October due to a fractured hip. “Irfan is a special bowler and paramount to our chances in the World Cup. We have select plans for him to ensure he is 100 percent fit and available when the time for the WC comes,” Moin said.