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PCB chief meets former players to discuss way forward for struggling national team

Lahore: Pakistan Cricket Board chief Zaka Ashraf has started consulting with former Test players following the national team’s shoddy performance in the ongoing World Cup in India.

On Tuesday, Ashraf met with Pakistan chief selector Inzamam ul Haq, and former players Muhammad Yousuf and Aaqib Javed in Lahore. He also plans to meet stalwarts like Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Saqlain Mushtaq and Umar Gul to get their advice on how to move forward.

A PCB press release said that the PCB chief was also looking forward to meeting with other former players to get their opinion on the development of current members of the Pakistan team.

Ashraf emphasised on the Board’s focus towards engaging the expertise of former players, who have represented Pakistan in various capacities.

“These players have served Pakistan at the highest stage and have a treasure of experience under their belts. We hope to utilise their expertise to help ensure our players are developed well in all aspects of the game.

‘In this way, we hope we can produce players in all departments of the game that can serve Pakistan in the future,” Ashraf said.

It is common for the PCB to take damage control steps to appease the angry cricket fans whenever the national team doesn’t perform well in a top level event.

In the past also, former heads of the board have engaged in similar exercises in a bid to show that they are taking steps to improve Pakistan cricket.

Ashraf also said the National Cricket Academy plans to organise a specialised camp with top talent from the domestic circuit.

“The primary goal of this camp is to nurture these players and make them ready for the international stage, in an attempt to bridge the gap between domestic and international cricket.”

Many cricket analysts and some former players believe that such cosmetic measures are not going to help Pakistan cricket because firstly it is unclear whether the present cricket management committee will continue after November 4 when its four month tenure expires.

(Published 24 October 2023, 15:30 IST)

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