LAHORE: Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ijaz Butt on Wednesday ended suspense over the appointment of a new coach for the national team, confirming it would be a Pakistani and not a foreigner.
Ijaz said the board had decided against appointing a foreign coach and would soon be finalising the name of a local for the job.
The post is not a particularly attractive one for foreign candidates, given the relative insecurity of any administration that makes the appointment.
The security situation in the country will also be a factor, though neither of Pakistan’s last two foreign coaches – Bob Woolmer or Geoff Lawson – had any problems staying in the country’s cricket headquarters in Lahore.
He said in a rethink of policy, the board agreed not to have a foreign coach after high profile candidates Greg Chappell and Mickey Arthur didn’t show any interest. “The full-time coach of the team will be a Pakistani,” Ijaz added. Ijaz, however, maintained that the coaching set-up may look at incorporating inputs from foreign coaches as and when required.
“We are now working on the concept of having a Pakistani coach and hiring foreign coaches as consultants or specialists for a shorter period of time. Whenever the need arose the board could go for hiring specialist foreign coaches or just bringing them in as consultants on a series to series basis,” he explained.
Pakistan’s two foreign coaches in the last few years had a mixed time. Woolmer had some success with the side between 2004 and 2006, but by the time of his death during the World Cup a year later, the experiment had soured. Soon after Woolmer’s demise, the board said they would hire a local coach, only to U-turn and plump for Geoff Lawson instead. He had a tougher time and though popular with the players,
he was removed and replaced by Intikhab Alam, soon after the administrative change that saw Ijaz take over as chairman in 2008. On being asked about former captain Waqar Younis among the men, the board is looking at, Ijaz said: We have around three former players in mind and will finally select one of them. Waqar is among them,” he concluded.