Haris Rauf is arguably the quickest bowler in Pakistan cricket right now and in Australia, if executed well his pace would trouble the batters. However, the pacer has opted out for the three-match Test series against Australia citing workload management. Pakistan chief selector Wahab Riaz criticized the pacemen during squad selection. However on Saturday Riaz changed his mind and looked to defend the ace-pacer.
Wahab stated that the PCB has orchestrated this NOC to ensure Haris remains in optimal form in the lead-up to the T20 series in New Zealand.”From now until the New Zealand series, there is a gap of 1.5 months during which Haris Rauf isn’t playing any cricket. His contract with Cricket Australia for the Big Bash comprises only 5 games,” he said speaking to reporters.
“Considering the thought that there won’t be any cricket for 1.5 months and he’s a fast bowler, to ensure he maintains his rhythm, we have given him a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from December 7th to 28th,” he added. “This will cover his 5 Big Bash matches so that he can then travel with the Pakistan team for the New Zealand tour. This is the science behind giving him the NOC.”
However, Wahab at his November 20 presser had claimed that as a policy in future only those players would be considered who gave preference to play for the country. “Any player no matter who he is or how big a player is, if he is not giving priority to the Pakistan team then he will not feature in our future plans,” he said.
Rauf, who has been a regular feature in Pakistan’s white-ball set-up, especially in the T20s, has played only one Test so far. He bowled only 13 overs in the match against England last year, and has since not shown any interest in playing the long format.