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Last Updated: Friday, 25 January 2008, 15:36 GMT
No Pakistan contract for Shoaib
Shoaib Akhtar
Shoaib struggled in the recent series defeats in India
Pakistan have dropped Shoaib Akhtar from their list of contracted players.

Shoaib and fellow paceman Mohammad Sami were missing along with opener Imran Nazir when the list of 15 players was revealed by the Pakistan Cricket Board.

Misbah-ul-Haq was promoted to the top income bracket to join captain Shoaib Malik, batsmen Younus Khan and Mohammad Yousuf and pace bowler Mohammad Asif.

Misbah was also made vice-captain until the end of 2008 but the decision to axe Shoaib will attract the most attention.

The 32-year-old has been centrally contracted since the system was introduced in Pakistan in 2005.


But he was left out of the ongoing home one-day series against Zimbabwe and told to prove his fitness after some disappointing performances on the tour of India in December.

PCB chief operating officer Shafqat Naghmi said earlier this week: "He struggled to bowl four to five-over spells and he had some fitness issues as well.

"He should have contacted us and started working on his match fitness. We don't know anything about his fitness as yet.

"Ever since the Indian series concluded he has not contacted us at all. We don't even know if he has returned from India."

We want it to be an elite contract so players fight and compete to get it

PCB chairman Nasim Ashraf

Sami, 26, was recalled for the India Test series but took only four wickets in three games, while 26-year-old Nazir has been in and out of the one-day team.

Misbah, 33, has been rewarded for some terrific performances, which began with the World Twenty20 in South Africa last September and have continued in the Test and one-day teams.

PCB chairman Nasim Ashraf said: "The players not given central contracts have been given special retainers and if they show commitment and form they can come back into the team after a year.

"We want it to be an elite contract so players fight and compete to get it. It should also serve as an incentive for younger players."

Pakistan's centrally contracted players: Shoaib Malik (capt), Misbah-ul-Haq (vice-capt), Mohammad Asif, Younus Khan, Mohammad Yousuf, Kamran Akmal, Sohail Tanvir, Shahid Afridi, Salman Butt, Umar Gul, Abdul Rehman, Yasir Arafat, Rao Iftikhar Anjum, Danish Kaneria, Fawad Alam.

Zimbabwe in Pakistan 2008
27 Dec 07 |  Fixtures


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