Dav Whatmore and Julien Fountain have signed two-year contracts with the PCB as Pakistan coach and Pakistan fielding coach respectively. Whatmore and Fountain had arrived in Lahore on March 2 but there had not been an official announcement regarding their appointment. On March 4, Zaka Ashraf, the PCB chairman, and Intikhab Alam, the director of international cricket, formally announced that Whatmore and Fountain had been contracted by the board.
“I wanted the best coaches in the world for my team and I gave the task of finding them to the committee appointed to select a coach,” Ashraf said at a press conference in Lahore. “They analysed all the candidates and they have found the best people for our team. I am happy to have Dav Whatmore and Julien Fountain as a part of our setup and hope they can ensure Pakistan always puts up fighting performances, whether we lose or win.”
Whatmore’s first assignment is the Asia Cup, a one-day tournament also featuring India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. He said Pakistan would need to select different teams for all three formats. Whatmore also made clear that though the eventual goal was to take Pakistan to the top of the rankings in all formats, it would take time.
“At the minute the team is ranked six [Pakistan are fifth in Tests and sixth in ODIs in the ICC rankings], so it will take time to get them to the top. To achieve anything you have to take small steps. We are focussed on those steps now rather than the ultimate goal.
Whatmore and Fountain have visited the National Cricket Academy in Lahore where former Pakistan fast bowler Sarfraz Nawaz is working with the national team’s bowlers.