LAHORE - After Ahmed Shahzad and Umar Akmal, Fawad Alam was sidelined by chief selector Inzamam ul Haq, who announced 21 players for the skill camp to be held at Gaddafi Stadium from May 30 to June 5.

These shortlisted 21 players will take part in the Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) skill camp to be conducted at the Gaddafi Stadium for the upcoming England tour.

Addressing the press conference here at the Gaddafi Stadium on Wednesday, Inzamam said that he had picked up the players purely on merit and injustice had not been done with anyone. “The players selected for skill camp and Pakistan A team are the unanimous choice of the selectors and performance was the only criteria to consider them.”

He said they had done a lot of hard work before finalising the players for the skill camp as well as for Pakistan A team. “It is unfortunate that there was not a single talented all-rounder, who could impress us with his skills and technique and same was the case with the spinners, as there was not a single suitable spinner who could have been selected. Leg spinner Yasir Shah has been facing fitness problems and he is likely to be fit in 10 days time.”

He said that he went to watch players train during the camp. “They were going through some hard drills at the earlier phase, but later on, they got used to the conditions and were really enjoying it. I discussed the training schedule with the trainers in Abbottabad and I think if such sort of a camp is organised again for a longer period of time, it will help a lot.”

Laying out the plan for the camp, Inzamam said: “The players will return from the fitness boot camp on May 27. They will be given a two-day rest and the skill camp will commence from May 30 and continue till June 5.”

The chief selector said the name of M Hafeez had been included in the camp and the final decision regarding his selection would be taken after going through his fitness reports.

To a query regarding Ahmad Shahzad and Umar Akmal, Inzamam said the selectors had eyes on both the batsmen, who really needed to improve their attitude as well as performance. “Ahmad and Umar have been observed very closely and if they succeed in improving their grey areas, they can make a comeback in the team.”

“We have also some other emerging players in our mind, who will be given chance in coming team selections for other assignments and most importantly, we have also consider the recommendations of the team captain and coach while selecting players for respective sides,” he added.

Inzamam said Pakistan A team had the representation of Under-19 players, who impressed with their extraordinary performance and similarly Asif Zakir and Akbarur Reman were the two new faces included in Pakistan senior team for the tour of England.

Replying to a query, Inzamam said: “We will keep on watching Pakistan A team players playing in the England, and those, who will perform exceptionally well, can be picked up for the senior team during the tour of England.”

To another query, Inzamam said in his personal opinion, education had no significant link with the cricket and other sports as there were a number of players who were less educated but they excelled in cricket and other sports and brought laurels for the country.

When asked would he consult new head coach before finalising the senior team, the chief selector said: “Yes, we will consult coach Mickey Arthur before naming the Pakistan Test team for the tour of England.”

Pakistan take on England this summer, which will be their first ever series since 2010. It will be fast bowler M Aamir's first tour to England after his infamous spot-fixing scandal in 2010, which resulted in a five-year suspension for him.

Pakistan will start their England tour with the first Test scheduled on July 14, which will be followed by three more Tests, five ODIs and a T20.

PLAYERS FOR SKILL CAMP

OPENERS: M Hafeez, Sami Aslam, Khurram Manzoor and Shaan Masood.

MIDDLE ORDER BATSMEN: Azhar Ali, Younis Khan, Misbahul Haq, Asad Shafiq, Iftikhar Ahmad, Asif Zakir and Akbarur Rehman.

FAST BOWLERS: M Aamir, Rahat Ali, Imran Khan, Sohail Khan, Junaid Khan and Ehsan Adil.

SPINNERS: Yasir Shah, Zulfiqar Babar. WICKETKEEPERS: Sarfraz Ahmad and M Rizwan.

PAKISTAN A TEAM

OPENERS: Sharjeel Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Jahid Ali.

MIDDLE ORDER BATSMEN: Saud Shakil, Babar Azam, Umar Siddique, Abdul Rehman Muzamil.

FAST BOWLERS: Hassan Ali, Mir Hamza, M Abbas, Aziz ullah, Bilawal Bhatti.

ALL-ROUNDER: M Nawaz.

SPINNERS: M Asghar, Shahdab Khan. WICKETKEEPER: M Hassan.