Pakistan appoints its biggest-ever selection team

LAHORE: Pakistan cricket chiefs Friday appointed a six-member selection committee — the biggest in its history – to choose the team to start a hectic season leading up to next year’s World Cup.

Former captain Moin Khan will head the committee, two members larger than usual, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced.

“Former Test players Saleem Yousuf, Shoaib Mohammad, Ijaz Ahmed, Wajahatullah Wasti and Mohammad Akram will be members of the committee,” said a PCB release.

Akram’s appointment in the selection committee means his two-year tenure as the team’s bowling coach has ended after only two months.

That suggests Waqar Younis’s likely appointment as head coach, as the legendary paceman could fill in bowling coaching duties himself.

Pakistan last week advertised the posts of head coach, fielding, batting and spin bowling coaches. A three-man committee will scrutinise applications after the May 5 deadline.

Akram has also been appointed head coach of the PCB’s national cricket academy in Lahore.

Pakistan have not had a chief selector since Iqbal Qasim stepped down after completing his tenure in July last year.

That started a sequence of appointments, sackings and refusals, leaving selection to be run on ad-hoc basis.

Khan was appointed chief selector in July but a ruling from Islamabad high court curtailed PCB chairman Najam Sethi’s powers, rendering Khan’s appointment void.

Former PCB chairman Zaka Ashraf, reinstated by the court in January this year, appointed Aamir Sohail as chief selector but a month later Ashraf was sacked by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. Sohail also lost his post without taking charge.

Sethi, restored in February, appointed another former captain Rashid Latif as chief selector — who then refused to take the post, citing lack of powers.

Pakistan will tour Sri Lanka in July-August followed by series against Australia, New Zealand and Zimbabwe — all likely in United Arab Emirates.

They will also tour New Zealand for a short one-day series before featuring in the World Cup to be jointly hosted by Australia and New Zealand.

Source: AFP