Pak leaves out Anwar from probables for Sharjah series

Published: Sunday, March 17, 2002, 2:09 [IST]
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Karachi: Opener Saeed Anwar was on Saturday left out of Pakistan's 30-strong probable squad for the forthcoming Sharjah tri-series. "Anwar is regaining fitness and doctors have told me that it would take him three to four weeks to get full fitness," chief selector Wasim Bari said. "Anwar would definitely come in our scheme of things once he gets fully fit," he said. Pakistan, Sri Lanka and New Zealand feature in the competition from April 8. Former fast bowling captain Wasim Akram and off spinner Saqlain Mushtaq are included in the list after being axed for the Asian Test championship final, which Sri Lanka won by eight wickets in Lahore last week. The 33-year-old Anwar, who has played 55 Tests and 230 One-day games, broke his wrist during a similar competition in Sharjah in October last year and missed Pakistan's series against Bangladesh and West Indies earlier this year. Anwar, who holds the world record of highest One-day innings of 194, became a devout Muslim last year, prompting several observers to speculate he would not play again. Reports in Pakistan media suggested Anwar is being kept out of the team because he distracts other players by preaching in the dressing room, an assertion Bari rejected. "It's absurd and I think there is nothing of this sort, let him start playing and he would be considered for selection," he said. Anwar last month said he would love to play in 2003 World Cup in South Africa and shrugged off claims that his turning towards religion would end his career.

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