Investing in quality coaching skills to create winning environments, while continually developing world’s best international players, has been at the heart of coach requirements behind which the Pakistan Cricket Board today announced a star-studded line-up of coaches for the National High Performance Centre and six Cricket Associations for the 2020-21 domestic cricket season following a comprehensive performance review and robust recruitment process.
The list of coaches is headed by Pakistan’s fourth-highest Test run-getter and second most runs scorer in ODIs, Mohammad Yousuf, who has been appointed as the batting coach at the National High Performance Centre (NHPC) in Lahore. Yousuf scored 7,530 Test and 9,720 ODI runs in a career spanning from 1998 to 2010.
Joining Yousuf at the NHPC is former wicketkeeper Atiq-uz-Zaman and tear away fast bowler Mohammad Zahid.
Atiq played a Test, three ODIs and 69 first-class matches from 1996 to 2007 and broke a longstanding record for the highest number of dismissals in a season in 2000-01 with 76 victims, while Zahid played five Tests, 11 ODIs and 43 first-class matches before a back injury cut short his promising career. Zahid is the only Pakistan bowler to take 10 or more wickets on Test debut.
With Mushtaq Ahmed already working as spin bowling consultant, the NHPC is now fully loaded with experienced coaches to hone the skill and talent of promising young cricketers and prepare them for challenges at the highest level.
Furthermore, these four coaches will also support and supplement the national teams’ player support personnel to help the elite cricketers continually improve their skills and prepare appropriately for success at international level.
National High Performance Centre coaches:
Atiq-uz-Zaman (fielding/wicketkeeping coach), Mohammad Yousuf (batting consultant/coach) and Mohammad Zahid (fast bowling coach). Mushtaq Ahmed (spin bowling consultant/coach, retained)
Mohammad Yousuf, former Pakistan captain: “My ambitions in making a career in coaching are an open secret but it was all about the timing and a proper roadmap for our future cricket in which I could contribute effectively. I believe this is the right time for me to start my second innings as I can sense the intent and optimism in the approach.
“I am delighted to have been offered this opportunity and I firmly believe I can help young cricketers by transferring my knowledge and experience, which I have acquired after being part of one of the brightest and formidable eras of Pakistan cricket.
“This will be an exciting and challenging task but I am up for it and look forward to making a meaningful contribution.”
Cricket Association coaches
The PCB has also confirmed 36 coaches for the six Cricket Associations, which will feature in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy (four-day first-class and three-day non first-class), National T20 Cup (first and second XIs), Pakistan Cup One-Day Tournament (first and second XIs) and the National U19 cricket tournament (three-day and one-day).
International stars added to the coaching panel are: Abdul Razzaq (46 Tests, 265 ODIs and 32 T20Is), Aizaz Cheema (seven Tests 14 ODIs and five T20Is), Basit Ali (19 Tests and 50 ODIs), Faisal Iqbal (26 Tests, 18 ODIs), Ghulam Ali (three ODIs and 167 first-class matches), Humayun Farhat (one Test and five ODIs), Irfan Fazil (one Test, one ODI) and Zafar Iqbal (eight ODIs).
Besides these international cricketers, seven other former first-class cricketers will make their coaching debuts in the upcoming domestic season. They are: Aftab Khan, Aslam Qureshi, Fahad Masood, Habib Baloch, Hafiz Majid Jahangir, Hanif Malik, and Mohammad Sadiq.
The coaches, who have been retained for the 2020-21 season, are: Abdul Rehman, Akram Raza, Bilal Ahmed, Fahad Akram, Hussain Khosa, Iqbal Imam, Kamran Khan, Mazhar Dinari, Mohammad Masroor, Mohammad Wasim, Rafatullah Mohmand, Saeed Anwar Junior, Sajjad Akbar, Samiullah Niazi, Saqib Faqir, Shahid Anwar, Shoaib Khan, Tahir Mahmood, Tanvir Shaukat, Wasim Haider and Zahoor Elahi.
The coaches, whose contracts will not be renewed for the 2020-21 season, are: Arshad Khan, Raj Hans (both Balochistan), Ijaz Ahmed Junior, Naveed Anjum (both Central Punjab), Kabir Khan, Sajid Shah (both Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), Manzoor Elahi and Tahir Mahmood (both Northern), Azam Khan, Tauseef Ahmed, Shaukat Mirza (all Sindh) and Javed Hayat (Southern Punjab).
Other changes in the NHPC coaching panel are: Abdul Majeed and Mansoor Rana (transferred to International Cricket department as fielding coach and team manager of the men’s national cricket team, respectively), Mohsin Kamal (released) and Mohtashim Rasheed (transferred as player support personnel with the Pakistan U19 cricket team).
Saqlain Mushtaq, Head of International Player Development: “It has been a rigorous 360-degree review and recruitment process, and in the end, I am happy that we have been able to attract some of the very best ex-international and domestic performers strictly on merit of their coaching ability. I am convinced they will contribute selflessly in making our 2020-21 domestic season stronger and more competitive.
“We have listened to our players and aim to provide a balance of the coaching they want and the coaching they need to take Pakistan to the top of world cricket.
“We have been very conscious of coaching combinations, appointing where possible a blend of skill sets within each association, with succession planning also a strong consideration.
“A number of newly-appointed coaches are known for playing an aggressive brand of positive cricket, and I hope they will induce the same spirit in their sides as we remain committed to closing the gap between our domestic cricket and international cricket.”
Nadeem Khan, Director – High Performance: “I welcome all the new coaches who will be supported and trained to deliver the coaching our players require for success on the international stage.
Our coaches will be respected leaders, hold strong relationships, be quality communicators and expert at creating winning plus learning environments.
“I also want to thank all the outgoing coaches for their contributions and urge them to remain involved with this great game as the PCB is optimistic there will be future opportunities in the game, both as coaches and consultants.
“When the PCB had launched the revamped domestic structure last year on 29 August, it had announced it was an evolving process and changes will be made to further strengthen the structure. Due to paucity of time last season, the coaches couldn’t be appointed through a review, analysis and recruitment process, which we have corrected this year.”
National Men’s Selection Committee reshuffled
Following changes of first XI head coaches, there has been a reshuffle in the men’s national selection committee.
Abdul Razzaq (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), Basit Ali (Sindh), Faisal Iqbal (Balochistan) and Shahid Anwar (Central Punjab) will now join Abdur Rehman (Southern Punjab) and Mohammad Wasim (Northern) in Misbah-ul-Haq’s men’s national selection panel.