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'Show discipline and focus on your cricket' - Misbah-ul-Haq tells Umar Akmal
Pakistan News

'Show discipline and focus on your cricket' - Misbah-ul-Haq tells Umar Akmal

Pakistan's head coach-cum-chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq feels perennial trouble-maker Umar Akmal needs to discipline himself in order to be considered for selection in the national side.

Umar's career, which began with a sparkling century on Test debut in 2009, has been plagued with frequent disciplinary issues and prolonged inconsistent runs across formats.

The 29-year-old middle-order batsman could face up to a lifetime ban after he was charged by the PCB for breaching the anti-corruption code on two separate counts.

Umar failed to report corrupt approaches in time to the relevant authorities, prompting strict action from the PCB, who immediately suspended him from taking part in the Pakistan Super League.

As a cloud of uncertainty hangs over the fate of Umar's derailed career, Misbah admitted all routes of redemption were open for the batsman but it depended entirely on his commitment.

"You and I can't do anything," the former Pakistan skipper told media in a video conference. "Umar has to decide himself, show discipline and focus on his cricket."

"He has to take a decision whether he wants to remain like this... He has shown good performances but needs to improve his fitness, discipline and commitment."

Umar's last appearance on the international stage occurred under Misbah's tenure when he was plucked out of obscurity for a chance against Sri Lanka in the Lahore T20Is in October 2019.

The experiment instantly backfired as Umar was sent back to the pavilion for successive golden ducks in his two outings.

The decision to bring back Umar and the out of favour Ahmed Shehzad, combined with the series whitewash at the hands of a second-string Sri Lanka side attracted heated criticism towards Misbah.

With cricket coming to a standstill amidst the coronavirus pandemic, Umar's future in the competitive arena now hinges on the PCB verdict.