A fresh guard with Misbah
On Wednesday, the Pakistan Cricket Board made the much awaited announcement of appointing the head coach cum chief selector and bowling coach. As was expected, Misbahul Haq got the slot. He was already being tipped as a favourite for the slot. The PCB had dropped a hint by appointing him as the camp commandant in Lahore as the cricketers started their training.
There were many aspirants for the post though their names were not made public during the PCB presser. They however were thanked for their expressions of interest. One noticeable thing was that all the five members of the interview panel voted for Misbah considering his credentials. There is no doubt about the fact that Misbah picked the pieces as he was offered captaincy during the crunch time. There were five of the Pakistani players that were banned and punished for spot fixing and the international cricket was already away from the Pakistani grounds due to terror threats which were all too real.
During his tenure, Pakistan became number 1 team in the Tests, won test series against West Indies, England and Australia making him the Pak captain with most number of Test wins under his belt. He was often termed the coolheaded guy in the dressing room.
It remains to be seen that while he knows the requirements of the modern day cricket, will he be able to bring that aggression to the side that is needed to win matches and stay on top in today’s fast paced cricket.
The other pick is Waqar Younas who has been the chief coach of the team twice. Accepting a position lower than that is something that does not make sense yet is understandable. That said, Waqar is inarguably the best one could get for a bowling coach.
Having one person as a head coach and the chief selector is a new experiment keeping in the view the practice of passing on of the buck, in the event of a poor showing by the Pak side, between the two top posts. In the past Younas Khan has asked for the same while he was offered to coach the Under19 cricket team. Although he is not given the position but his suggestion has been taken. We only hope that this works as is expected and does not make the person invested with too much powers an autocrat. As has been said there should be periodic evaluation of the office holders to keep them on toes.
Let’s also not forget the past dispensation that comprised Mickey Arthur, Grant Flower and Azher Mehmood. They did a commendable job. Arthur was magnificent except when he forced decisions upon the captain. Inzimamul Haq too did a good job except when he chose to interfere with others’ role. Putting the past behind us, the new setup should give their hundred per cent for the Pakistan cricket.