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Captaincy uncertainty

The PCB chairman must take a decision himself about the leadership question. If he doesn’t, Pakistan’s chances at the World Cup will go down

Captaincy uncertainty

Pakistan cricket seems to be in disorder on the issue of captaincy just ahead of World Cup 2019. Since Sarfraz Ahmed made seemingly racist remarks about Andile Phehlukwayo, a lot has been written in newspapers and on TV channels. But it totally depends on the skills of the PCB’s new leadership under Ehsan Mani to resolve this complicated issue. Only time will tell how they deal with it. No doubt Sarfraz Ahmed did a bad thing but he is receiving his punishment despite having apologised.

The fact of the matter is that those who do not want Sarfraz as the captain are blowing this issue out of proportion, taking advantage of his mistake. They are also highlighting all the other issues like that of his quarrel with Hassan Ali. But people must keep one thing in mind: this will deepen the division in the team.

Captaincy has always remained an issue in Pakistan cricket. It is clear that the old game of lobbying has started and it will further deepen in the coming days. It solely depends on Mani who should take a bold decision just as Shaharyar Khan came up with a clear statement about Misbah-ul-Haq’s captaincy which cleared all doubts.

Mani must come in front and resolve this issue; otherwise the situation will become more complicated. The results of the one-day series against England will also play a role in the decision on the captaincy for the World Cup.

Mani has been chairman of ICC. Besides, he has worked on several important posts. He has been part of powerful committees.  If he passes his responsibilities to others, by making some committee, it will not work. If he remains silent, Pakistan’s losing streak will continue.

PCB chairman is the most powerful man in the board. Why he is silent only he knows. Shaharyar Khan was very soft and flexible personality and never challenged the decisions made by shrewd tactician Najam Sethi, who was close to at then PM Nawaz Sharif and assumed a lot of power in the PCB. But wherever and whenever Shaharyar Khan needed to show his power he came in front with a clear statement.

The time is passing. The more time the chairman takes the worse the situation will get. Pakistan are the winners of Champions Trophy and have many talented players who can make the country proud but they need a united team with dynamic leadership, and stable coaching staff.

If PCB appoints Shoaib Malik as captain what will happen to the team after the World Cup as Malik will retire.

How our cricket fraternity behaves in such a scenario everyone knows. We remember how people treated Misbah, called him Mr tuk tuk, disregarding the fact that he anchored the ship of Pakistan cricket during the most troubled time.

The PCB should first stop all officials, the selection committee and the cricket committee from speaking to media on the issue of captaincy because it creates more division among the players of the team which would be a disaster for Pakistan in the World Cup 2019.

The PCB chairman should take suggestions from PM Imran Khan whose experience and vision would do better than those involved in the game of lobbying.

 

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Syed Intikhab Ali

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