PCB calls meeting after debacle against England

Karachi: Shaken by Pakistan’s defeats to England in the ODI and T20 series in the UAE, the national selectors are seeking answers from head coach Waqar Younis and his support staff over what went wrong in those matches.

Pakistan lost the one-day series 1-3 and was swamped three nil in the T20 series, sliding down from number two to six in the ICC rankings.

The team is already languishing at number nine in the ODI rankings.

An official source in the Pakistan Cricket Board told PTI that a meeting would be held on Friday in Lahore, in which the performances of the team would be reviewed.

“The significant aspect of the meeting which will be chaired by the board chief Shaharyar Khan and will also be attended by Najam Sethi and Chief Operating officer Subhan Ahmad is that Waqar, assistant coach Mushtaq Ahmed and chief selector Haroon Rasheed have also been called for the meeting,” he said.

According to the source the meeting had been arranged on the request of Haroon, who is not happy with the way the team management experimented with the available players in the series against England.

“Haroon wants some things sorted out with the team management in the presence of the board chairman as the selectors are not satisfied that the best combinations were tried out in the limited over matches,” the source said.

Such has been impact of the losses to England that the four-member selection committee is also flying out to Dubai on Sunday to watch the limited over series between Pakistan A and England Lions.

Asked about the trip Haroon said the purpose was to watch closely the performance of top players picked from domestic cricket.

“We don’t have much time now and we need to have a look at all available talent before we finalise our squad for the World T20 in India,” he added.

Waqar, who normally flies out to his home in Sydney after a series to spend time with his family, is also this time returning to Lahore with the support staff, including the foreign batting coach Grant Flower, physio and trainer.

“The meeting will address all issues which appear to have dampened the performances of the team and also rumours that all was not well in the dressing room and some players suffer from insecurity over their place in the team,” the source said.

Already there have been calls for heads to roll after the defeats, with former PCB Chairman Lt Gen (retd) Tauqir Zia calling for the sacking of the national selection committee and team management.

“What do you expect when the board chairman is constantly focused on the series with India and other senior officials are concerned about PSL. What can one say but if I was chairman I would for starters sack the selectors and team management and bring in people who know how to build a team and play combinations,” Tauqir Zia said.

Pakistan’s former captain Javed Miandad also said that the PCB, the selectors and team management had only themselves to blame for the debacle against England.

“Playing the wrong players, not taking the right decisions at the right time and not showing consistency in selection are some of the reasons for the defeats,” he said.