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Chief Selector Wahab Riaz fires former batter Salman Butt after facing backlash

Riaz says the message has already been conveyed to Butt
Pakistan cricket team’s chief selector Wahab Riaz speaking at a press conference in Lahore on December, 2, 2023 - Screengrab via YouTube/Pakistan Cricket
Pakistan cricket team’s chief selector Wahab Riaz speaking at a press conference in Lahore on December, 2, 2023 - Screengrab via YouTube/Pakistan Cricket

Chief Selector of Pakistan men’s team Wahab Riaz has announced that he has reverted the decision of making former batter Sulman Butt his consultant.

“Salman Butt was made my consultant only to give his opinion, however, a few media houses and people spread propaganda to mess things up. Resultantly, I am reverting that decision and have already told him that he cannot be part of my team,” he said during a press conference at Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore on Saturday.

A day earlier, the Pakistan Cricket Board appointed Kamran Akmal, Rao Iftikhar Anjum, and Butt as consultant members to Riaz.

Responding to Butt’s involvement in the 2010 fixing scandal, Riaz said that such things should be left behind as he had served his punishment.

Read: Sarfaraz Ahmed makes comeback as Test squad announced for Australia tour

“For me, he is a good cricketing mind and that is why I wanted to have his consultancy. There was no pressure from anyone. I took the decision and I am reverting it,” he added.

The chief selector said that he backed down from his decision after he was accused of nepotism due to his relations with Butt.

A complete overhaul of the national board started after Pakistan did not make it to the knockout stage of the Men’s 50-over World Cup in India.

Initially, Babar Azam stepped down from captaincy in all three formats of the game, as many cricket aficionados blamed his captaincy for the side’s performance.

His position was later taken by Shan Masood as the Test team’s captain while Shaheen Shah Afridi was named T20 team’s skipper.

Last month, former Test captain Mohammad Hafeez was appointed Pakistan Men’s Team Director. Later, Wahab Riaz was appointed as the chief selector of the national men’s selection committee, with the first task to announce the side for the Australia tour.

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