New age June 29, 2007

Ifs and Butts

Now the young man is vice-captain, a tribute to his potential both as a player and as a thinking cricketer
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I was lucky enough to watch Salman Butt on debut. The immediate observation was this was a young player with a tremendous amount of time and hence--almost paradoxically--able to play the ball wonderfully late. A bright future as Pakistan's star opener beckoned. Since then Salman has delighted and dumbfounded. Some of his best efforts have come against Australia while last summer he was sent home early from England after a disappointing tour.

Now the young man is vice-captain, a tribute to his potential both as a player and as a thinking cricketer. Youth must have its day, of course, but there seems to be an unseemly haste about his appointment. Salman is yet to secure his place in the team. There are many other not-so-old candidates knocking around (and I go back to my advocacy of the two vice-captain theory). And the signal that the PCB is trying to send out with his appointment is a needless one.

Salman Butt's most valuable role for Pakistan is as a formidable opener. The vice-captaincy is a trifling thing that can be gifted and withdrawn on a whim. It is not a guaranteed route to the captaincy. This latest wonder of decision making may create unnecessary pressure, and harm Salman the Batsman and ironically Salman the Future Captain.

Let's hope not. Salman Butt can become a highly successful cricketer for Pakistan. On this occasion, his cause has been hampered by the misplaced enthusiasm of his employers.

Kamran Abbasi is an editor, writer and broadcaster. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • tony afzal on August 11, 2007, 18:36 GMT

    Aaaah, poor Mohd. Yusuf. While he was a good Christian he had no chance to be entrusted with the reins of leadership of our team. Such is the problem with all our people. Religion must always come first! So he is forcibly bludgeoned into becoming a convert to Islam. (When one converts from one religion to another , it is always conversion. But why in Islam do converts have to EMBRACE Islam?). So what happens? He goes the other way and becomes one more neck-bearded menace to society. Again he is discarded because of religion(albeit this time more in the fundamentalist vein).

    Can a Parsee become Pakistan's cricket captain?

  • tony afzal on August 11, 2007, 18:29 GMT

    When will Shoaib Akhtar grow up? He is a total disgrace to cricket, the national team and to Pakistan in general.

    It is high time he chose another career. Not in sports because he is the most unsportsman sportsman the cricketing world has ever had to face. Just because he is considered to be the world's fastest bowler is no reason why he should be comforted in cottonwool all the time. He MUST be forcibly ejected from all asppects of the game if ever the national team is to regain any semblance of respect. Imnmediately.

  • Pak Fan on July 13, 2007, 16:39 GMT

    Salman - yes good opener, to get him out..bowl him to the 4th wicket and a simple catch at slips. Works all the time - ask Ifran Pathan or Zaheer.

    Someone who is barely in the team a year ago is now the v.captain. Even when he needs to step in as acting captain when Shoaib M is out, he won't get support from Afridi's and S.Akhtar's.

    My choice would be Afridi or S.Akhtar - they are senior and v.captaincy will add some sense of responsibility to them.

  • AA on July 4, 2007, 12:20 GMT

    The appointment of Salman is definitely debatable because there are far more deserving players for this position. Our think tanks, specially the skipper Shoaib Malik, are pretty sure that Salman will retain his position in this team as a permanent member due to the fact that he is a left hander, but I don't agree with it. I must say that PCB did finally make a right decision to strip Mohammad Asif of his ranks, as Asif had a lot of baggage that included doping scandal which is still very fresh in cricket lover's and ICC's mind. Most recently his immature behavior at Abu Dhabi's game where he insulted opposing teams captain, Mahela. Mahela is a very well known player, captain and a very respectable human being who doesn't need any introduction whereas a childish act by inexperienced Pakistani VC, Asif, gave another bad name to Pakistan which gets attention by ICC and the entire cricketing world as well. I have never put my other observation in writing but I think it is time, PCB has decided to get rid of all religious affairs in Pakistani team. Hence, not considering Mohammad Yousuf or Shahid Afridi for any leading position in Pakistani team. There is no question about both of these cricketers talents and accomplishments, they have over the years proved their worth to the entire cricketing world. Everyone in the world of cricket knows their names, in many parts of the world Pakistan is known because of them.There would not have any debate for captain or vice captain if they were not Active religiously in our team. This is a subject which can't be discussed openly, so PCB has adopted these tactics to keep both of them out of any ranks. Again, this is solely my observation and you don't have to agree with it. Shoaib Akhtar has a very powerful voice and personality, also equally terrific record to back his credentials. He will not be considered for any ranks just due to the fact that PCB does not want to deal with his ideas, approach and also blunt and loud mouth. These traits of Shoaib are all positive for a good leader but PCB's officials including Selection Committee lacks common sense, cricketing knowledge, managerial skills and organization, hence, are not capable of dealing with Shoaib Akhtar. This says it all for me. Thanks! AA

  • AR on July 3, 2007, 17:47 GMT

    I'm not sure why everyone keeps harping on hard cricketing skills as the main qualification for the post of VC. Captains and vice-captains need two things: 1. Leadership skills, and 2. Strategic/tactical skills. Generally leadership skills are more important in the captain, while strategic/tactical skills are more important in the VC (as he's around to advise the captain). However, you end up wanting a blend of both, since you want your VC to someday transition into the captaincy. So here's what I want to know about Salman Butt - what kind of leadership skills has he displayed, and what has been his record as a leader? If he has led other teams, and united his players to deliver a good win/loss record, I have no problems with his youth or the fact that he's talented but hasn't quite cemented his place in the team. We don't want the best cricketer as a captain or vice-captain. We want the best leader and cricketing brain that will lead the team to victory.

  • Khalid Arif Siddiqui, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on July 2, 2007, 14:23 GMT

    Salman Butt without doubt is one of the best openers that we have seen for a long time and appointing him as vice captain can be termed as a wise decession. He is a very confidant young man and in fact he deserved to be the captain of the team which eventually he will be Insha Allah. We need educated and confidant guys to lead our team unlike the Super AALOO that we had till the world cup. If u have confidant guys like Salman Butt leading the team then the performance of the team is elevated. Having said all this I must also emphasize that the Sellection Committee's powers must also be increased and they should sellect the best available talent, they should not be allowed be dictated by the captain and/or the board officials as was happening in the past. The best available talent should be picked up and handed over to the captain & the coach who should plan thier strategy in accordance to the available armoury in their sleeves. Current panel of sellectors are very soft and they must be advised to be strong and avoid becoming rubber stamp like Bari & group. Captains and/or board officials must not be allowed to interfere in sellection process. When on tours the tour management should be advised not to demand replacements by names, it should be the prerogrative of the sellectors only to decide who should be sent as replacement.

    In the end I would like to congratulate Salman Butt for being appointed as vice captain, and also wish him luck.

  • JAVED A. KHAN, MONTREAL, CANADA on July 2, 2007, 11:55 GMT

    WADA's yada yada case against Shoaib and Asif has been dismissed at the CAS for lack of jurisdiction. Case closed, chapter closed, Mr. Kamran Abbassi must initiate a new thread on this topic and question WADA's intentions on damaging and tarnishing Pakistan's image and reputation. Should the PCB not raise a voice against them and protest for creating a mountain outta mole?

  • Anes on July 2, 2007, 7:52 GMT

    I think Mohammed Yousuf is the correct choice as a Captain and Shoib Malik is Vice captain of the team.When we see the pakistan team now,its like a school team captaining very young and VC also further very younger than Captain.So Please Mr.Ashraf change your decision quickly as possible because their will be a very good series comming in future.

  • Ali on July 2, 2007, 7:21 GMT

    I would like to know what did Asif do wrong to get sacked as the vice???

  • YOU SHALL NEVER KNOW (maybe) on July 2, 2007, 7:12 GMT

    Shahid Afridi should have been Vice Captain not Salman Butt, For these reasons...

    1.Afridi is more experienced and energetic. When Pakistan has no hope of winning, or they think they're in a comfortable position, Afridi is the only one ALIVE!

    2.Afridi has improved a lot on his bowling and batting in the past couple of years, he can be a deadly batsman in the test version now, too.

    3.In my opinion he is pakistan's BEST ODI BOWLER! He does not let the opposition get the runs easily, because of his skiddy, fast spinners (leg and off) and recently he has been taking wickets whenever needed.

    4.He is a much bigger fighter than Butt, he's always talking to the team, trying to lift their spirits. So PCB "WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU."

    AND THIS IS ALL RECENT!

  • tony afzal on August 11, 2007, 18:36 GMT

    Aaaah, poor Mohd. Yusuf. While he was a good Christian he had no chance to be entrusted with the reins of leadership of our team. Such is the problem with all our people. Religion must always come first! So he is forcibly bludgeoned into becoming a convert to Islam. (When one converts from one religion to another , it is always conversion. But why in Islam do converts have to EMBRACE Islam?). So what happens? He goes the other way and becomes one more neck-bearded menace to society. Again he is discarded because of religion(albeit this time more in the fundamentalist vein).

    Can a Parsee become Pakistan's cricket captain?

  • tony afzal on August 11, 2007, 18:29 GMT

    When will Shoaib Akhtar grow up? He is a total disgrace to cricket, the national team and to Pakistan in general.

    It is high time he chose another career. Not in sports because he is the most unsportsman sportsman the cricketing world has ever had to face. Just because he is considered to be the world's fastest bowler is no reason why he should be comforted in cottonwool all the time. He MUST be forcibly ejected from all asppects of the game if ever the national team is to regain any semblance of respect. Imnmediately.

  • Pak Fan on July 13, 2007, 16:39 GMT

    Salman - yes good opener, to get him out..bowl him to the 4th wicket and a simple catch at slips. Works all the time - ask Ifran Pathan or Zaheer.

    Someone who is barely in the team a year ago is now the v.captain. Even when he needs to step in as acting captain when Shoaib M is out, he won't get support from Afridi's and S.Akhtar's.

    My choice would be Afridi or S.Akhtar - they are senior and v.captaincy will add some sense of responsibility to them.

  • AA on July 4, 2007, 12:20 GMT

    The appointment of Salman is definitely debatable because there are far more deserving players for this position. Our think tanks, specially the skipper Shoaib Malik, are pretty sure that Salman will retain his position in this team as a permanent member due to the fact that he is a left hander, but I don't agree with it. I must say that PCB did finally make a right decision to strip Mohammad Asif of his ranks, as Asif had a lot of baggage that included doping scandal which is still very fresh in cricket lover's and ICC's mind. Most recently his immature behavior at Abu Dhabi's game where he insulted opposing teams captain, Mahela. Mahela is a very well known player, captain and a very respectable human being who doesn't need any introduction whereas a childish act by inexperienced Pakistani VC, Asif, gave another bad name to Pakistan which gets attention by ICC and the entire cricketing world as well. I have never put my other observation in writing but I think it is time, PCB has decided to get rid of all religious affairs in Pakistani team. Hence, not considering Mohammad Yousuf or Shahid Afridi for any leading position in Pakistani team. There is no question about both of these cricketers talents and accomplishments, they have over the years proved their worth to the entire cricketing world. Everyone in the world of cricket knows their names, in many parts of the world Pakistan is known because of them.There would not have any debate for captain or vice captain if they were not Active religiously in our team. This is a subject which can't be discussed openly, so PCB has adopted these tactics to keep both of them out of any ranks. Again, this is solely my observation and you don't have to agree with it. Shoaib Akhtar has a very powerful voice and personality, also equally terrific record to back his credentials. He will not be considered for any ranks just due to the fact that PCB does not want to deal with his ideas, approach and also blunt and loud mouth. These traits of Shoaib are all positive for a good leader but PCB's officials including Selection Committee lacks common sense, cricketing knowledge, managerial skills and organization, hence, are not capable of dealing with Shoaib Akhtar. This says it all for me. Thanks! AA

  • AR on July 3, 2007, 17:47 GMT

    I'm not sure why everyone keeps harping on hard cricketing skills as the main qualification for the post of VC. Captains and vice-captains need two things: 1. Leadership skills, and 2. Strategic/tactical skills. Generally leadership skills are more important in the captain, while strategic/tactical skills are more important in the VC (as he's around to advise the captain). However, you end up wanting a blend of both, since you want your VC to someday transition into the captaincy. So here's what I want to know about Salman Butt - what kind of leadership skills has he displayed, and what has been his record as a leader? If he has led other teams, and united his players to deliver a good win/loss record, I have no problems with his youth or the fact that he's talented but hasn't quite cemented his place in the team. We don't want the best cricketer as a captain or vice-captain. We want the best leader and cricketing brain that will lead the team to victory.

  • Khalid Arif Siddiqui, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on July 2, 2007, 14:23 GMT

    Salman Butt without doubt is one of the best openers that we have seen for a long time and appointing him as vice captain can be termed as a wise decession. He is a very confidant young man and in fact he deserved to be the captain of the team which eventually he will be Insha Allah. We need educated and confidant guys to lead our team unlike the Super AALOO that we had till the world cup. If u have confidant guys like Salman Butt leading the team then the performance of the team is elevated. Having said all this I must also emphasize that the Sellection Committee's powers must also be increased and they should sellect the best available talent, they should not be allowed be dictated by the captain and/or the board officials as was happening in the past. The best available talent should be picked up and handed over to the captain & the coach who should plan thier strategy in accordance to the available armoury in their sleeves. Current panel of sellectors are very soft and they must be advised to be strong and avoid becoming rubber stamp like Bari & group. Captains and/or board officials must not be allowed to interfere in sellection process. When on tours the tour management should be advised not to demand replacements by names, it should be the prerogrative of the sellectors only to decide who should be sent as replacement.

    In the end I would like to congratulate Salman Butt for being appointed as vice captain, and also wish him luck.

  • JAVED A. KHAN, MONTREAL, CANADA on July 2, 2007, 11:55 GMT

    WADA's yada yada case against Shoaib and Asif has been dismissed at the CAS for lack of jurisdiction. Case closed, chapter closed, Mr. Kamran Abbassi must initiate a new thread on this topic and question WADA's intentions on damaging and tarnishing Pakistan's image and reputation. Should the PCB not raise a voice against them and protest for creating a mountain outta mole?

  • Anes on July 2, 2007, 7:52 GMT

    I think Mohammed Yousuf is the correct choice as a Captain and Shoib Malik is Vice captain of the team.When we see the pakistan team now,its like a school team captaining very young and VC also further very younger than Captain.So Please Mr.Ashraf change your decision quickly as possible because their will be a very good series comming in future.

  • Ali on July 2, 2007, 7:21 GMT

    I would like to know what did Asif do wrong to get sacked as the vice???

  • YOU SHALL NEVER KNOW (maybe) on July 2, 2007, 7:12 GMT

    Shahid Afridi should have been Vice Captain not Salman Butt, For these reasons...

    1.Afridi is more experienced and energetic. When Pakistan has no hope of winning, or they think they're in a comfortable position, Afridi is the only one ALIVE!

    2.Afridi has improved a lot on his bowling and batting in the past couple of years, he can be a deadly batsman in the test version now, too.

    3.In my opinion he is pakistan's BEST ODI BOWLER! He does not let the opposition get the runs easily, because of his skiddy, fast spinners (leg and off) and recently he has been taking wickets whenever needed.

    4.He is a much bigger fighter than Butt, he's always talking to the team, trying to lift their spirits. So PCB "WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU."

    AND THIS IS ALL RECENT!

  • Anam Ahmed on July 2, 2007, 2:51 GMT

    The problem with the decision is PCB being childish...i dont get it how on earth can you appoint Butt as a VC when he is yet to secure his position in the regular squad...no doubt he is very good player and i think suits perfectly in our never ending search for openers...but on the other hand if yusuf wasnt a bright option as a Captain then y not consider him as a VC and if PCB is so-much-into-young-talent then y not Asif (ex-VC) or not-so-young-yet-enthusiastic Afridi?...Oh dear what drama *sigh*

  • Mohammed Abrar Ahmed on July 1, 2007, 12:35 GMT

    I think appointing salam butt as vice captain is a good decision. Hopefully this will empower salam to concentrate and be more consistent with his batting performances. Personally I wouldnt even object for him to be appointed as the main captain. He is a fighter and most of all the most learned of the lot who foremost can SPEAK ENGLISH.... its time we had a captain who really stood out.

  • ABDULLA on July 1, 2007, 8:35 GMT

    Sick thinking of PCB and its affairs seems they want to repeat the mistake of post imran era with 11 captains playing in a team. (Miandad, malik, rameez, wasim, waqar sohail all played in one team after short stint of leaderships) If a change is required anywhere its not in the team its in the PCB management. I think even i can make better decision than musharaf chamcha Dr Nasim Ashraf

  • Zulfiqar on July 1, 2007, 7:53 GMT

    Ahhh!!! First Shoaib Malik and now Butt!!! What a disappointment. But we as a nation are used to such disappointments. So don't worry. We will see more captains and vice captains very soon. No matter is Malik and Butt duo performed well or not.

  • ally tee on July 1, 2007, 7:20 GMT

    some of the comments regarding afridi being rashless and immmature and salman butt being the right choice were lame and doz spectators badly need to grow up..salman butt was not thrown out of the team for just one performance it was his overall inconsistency which led his demise..he is only a batter and if he cant perform wid de bat then dere aint ne place for him in de team.. dumb ppl compare him wid saeed anwer..he is not even a shadow of anwar while playing on de leg side..he cant even b compared to de kenyan cricketers coz he really suxx on de leg side...neways back to de topic if afridi is not suitable then yah rite..it was dez afridi's,razzaq'a n akhtar whom absent made us kicked out of de world cup in de very first round..rite now in cricket pakistan..if dere is a person who can lead dis team wid pride..aggression n honor then its afridi..he can only take care of akhter's agressiono n n off the field..make afridi the captain ohh rather i shud say wait for afridi de captain n de results..

  • Enigma on July 1, 2007, 6:28 GMT

    It is a sad day for Pak Cricket. If only we could shun the politics!!!! He is not even a regular in both forms of the game.......:(

  • Asif on July 1, 2007, 6:08 GMT

    Horrible choice. This player does not even desreve a place in the team. The PCB has done the worst possible thing here, sowing the first seeds of disharmony in this new look team. Things can get so bad that they will be on their knees praying for the days under Inzi when everyone was united.

  • Raza FROM NJ on July 1, 2007, 4:20 GMT

    calm down pakis! we seem to contradict ourselves a lot! We do a lot of talking about giving our youngsters a shot to play. PCB gives Butt VC and a spot back on the big team and you all start to complain. Two things, one all these critical post are from Afrdi Pathan backers or two extremist religious zealots who wan't the mullah inzi style of captaincy with Mo Yo at the helm. Listen up Paki's; PCB wants a fresh start and they do not want any influence from the inzi pack; Afridi, Razzaq, and Mo Yousuf! Inzi career is done and all these statements by him getting back on the squad by going to county are pointless as he will never play for team pakistan again. HIS CAPTAINCY damaged Pakistan cricket and made bob woolmer's coaching pointless. Whatmore is coming in and PCB wanted a new start with Malik and Butt and if BUTT fails to deliver as an opener and VC then he will be replaced. Afridi, Razzaq should be dropped for good and Fawad Alam and Faisal Iqbal should be given a shot to play the middle order!

  • JAVED A. KHAN, MONTREAL, CANADA on July 1, 2007, 4:04 GMT

    On July 3rd if Butt opens the innings against the Indians, will it be with Imran Nazir or Yasir Hameed?

    Choosing 11/15 will be a difficult task for Shoaib Malik. Especially with Butt's appointment as the VC and two senior players have been called in i.e., Younis Khan and Shoaib Akhtar which means Shoaib Malik must accommodate the trio in the playing eleven. Otherwise, there will be a big hue and cry from all corners of the globe especially if they loose this one and only encounter against their arch rivals which means a lot to so many people. So, what would be the team like?

    This means Rao Ifti, Mohammad Sami, Imran Nazir and rookie Fawad Alam will stay on the sidelines. Or will they gamble avec Imran Nazir instead of Yasir Hameed? In my opinion the above 11 that I have mentioned the names would be the team against India. This doesn't mean I am happy with this team, its only my prediction. I would go for Rao Ifti in place of Razzaq and Imran Nazir in place of Hameed. Thats the changes I would make. But, lets see what they'll do.

    India on the other hand have acclimatized themselves fairly well in Belfast which is not too far from Glasgow and they already had their runs and re-runs, fitness and illness so we can say they have 'been there and done that.' Also, Tendulkar is once again in the limelight by creating personal world records and posted a milestone which is literally miles ahead of others. In other words the Indians appear to be far more prepared mentally, physically and psychologically better equipped than the Pakistanis who may still be suffering from their usual fitness problems, jet lag and in getting used to the local conditions. This solo match is a long awaited encounter, reportedly a sell out. Hopefully its not a noora kushti. I am not trying to be mordant here, but I am as keen and anxious as anyone else on this blog to see that match live on TV.

    In any case, this Tuesday's match would be like a litmus test especially for Shoaib Malik i.e., 'coz this is the last international match Pakistan would be playing before the twenty20 world cup also, there aren't any domestic matches either. A match against India will definitely reveal and redeem Malik's leadership skills in terms of team selection and in utilizing his resources in winning the game. Any match between India and Pakistan is not taken lightly by the people from both these countries. It will also manifest the belief and boost the confidence in the players and the winner will carry a psychological advantage from this win, especially when they meet on Friday Sept. 14, at Durban and again in India in November 2007 to play three tests and five ODI's.

  • Hassan on July 1, 2007, 3:03 GMT

    personally I am not satsified with the decision to appoint Butt as VC. This has been a major problem... appointing someone who is not even in the playing 11 as VC. They should select a squad of 14 - 15.. and then tell them that the Captain and VC will be selected from those players.

    I feel Afridi was unecessarily overlooked, yes there is the stereotype in Pakistan that he is no brain just crazy crickter, but people don't understand his value in the bowling category and the fielding category. I feel he has been harshly done by the PCB - thus the "incident"

    Afridi your time will come bro...

  • Rahman on July 1, 2007, 1:33 GMT

    Hi , what i can say about pakistan cricket board lots of bad decision since 1992 worldcup and series in england when they remove miandad from captaincy. since than pakistan team never find a good captain to lead the pakistan. Now again first they make shoib malik captain who dont deserve to be in test team and now salman butt who till now not cemented his place in the team. Secondly the coach since we having foreign coach our cricket always going on declining side. we need a local coach cricket is not all about computer. Computer is nothing to say in playing cricket , I am a System analyst but i never think computer can play any part in improving your cricket skills apart that u shuld keep records on it. A good coach can easily judge the weekness of his players and others player without computer too.

    I pray and wish pakistan cricket can go in right direction and war of regions should be end now.

  • Xahir on July 1, 2007, 0:45 GMT

    I think Afridi was a better choice...Salman first has to earn a place in National side

    Xahir Karachi

  • Asjad Mir - London (Supporter Pakistan Cricket team for ages) on June 30, 2007, 23:56 GMT

    Yar Kamran,

    I have an unanswered question (appropriately anyways). Please can you explore answers to this. I am sure you can find me some satisfactory answers.

    Why do test matches in Pakistan not start on a Thursday. Why it is not a good day for a test match in Pakistan to start on that day.

    I have high hopes of you taking the pain to find some answers.

    Regards

    Asjad

  • Owais on June 30, 2007, 21:58 GMT

    PCB seems to have gone nuts. How could Butt be made VC when he is not even an automatic choice ? they seem to have based their decision on the the assumption that responsibility will get something good out of him as a batsman as well. But what if his game does not improve, then we will have another person in the elite VC-discard list (asif having joined it already). What does that do to our already fragmented set up ? Afridi's, Razzaq's and even poor Yousuf's and now Asif's and possibly butt's. Who will be siding with which group ? It now seems PCB is run by jerks.

  • ALI on June 30, 2007, 20:44 GMT

    Kamran Thanks for removing that ignorant post made by A.A.KHAN on the previous thread,Please adopt a strict policy in future.

    Why are we making such a big deal about this Vice Captaincy issue,Look at England they changed four captains in the past eight months or so and they seem to be getting back on track,none of the senior players deserve to be the captain or Vice captain as it will only result in status Quo, After watching their performance in the World cup we were all after their heads and after three months we want these guys back in power.

    I agree with Nauman PCB needs to give Inzimam a decent farewell.Nauman just for the record Imran Farhat performed better than Salman Butt in domestic cricket, he worked exteremly hard after getting dropped from the national side and regained his form but some how PCB preferred Imran Nazir over him. MOhammad Yousaf deserved to be the Captain after Inzimam but there was too much outcry against him coz of his poor performance in the World Cup and his too much involvement with tableeghi party also hurt his chances, which is sad, as it is in my opinion a discrimination.

  • Suhaib Jalis Ahmed on June 30, 2007, 20:17 GMT

    THanks for the appreciation Ahrash.

    I guess one thing is for certain... Younis Khan's sudden refusal to lead has really been a major setback.

    I was not a fan of Younis as skipper, but I guess if he was the vice captain for so many years... he should have accepted the role of captain. At the end he compounded the problems caused by the PCB's lack of planning.

  • Rahat Minhas on June 30, 2007, 18:04 GMT

    Taking the past history of appointment of Vice Captains' in Pakistan, appointment of Vice Captain is no big deal as they come in and go out fast.

    However,Lately Salman Butt was never a certainity for the team! Moreover neglecting senior players may hurt their feelings deeply which may affect future results.However time will prove whether this decision was right though I feel not all of the factors may have been properly assessed the way some of the decisions are taken by PCB top echelon.

  • umer iqbal janjua on June 30, 2007, 17:04 GMT

    i like salman butt,s performins from his first one day match .he is termandes timer of ball.&as a circket loving pakistani I think that he should play for pakistan more 15 years as he had not given many chances to play

  • omar hussain on June 30, 2007, 17:02 GMT

    There is no doubting Salaman Butt's potential but giving him the vice-captainacy has nothing to justify it.Butt has still to secure a permanent place in the team and if form is anything to go by he lacks the temperament and experience for the job.Perhaps his fluency in English has had its effect!!

  • Saima on June 30, 2007, 16:44 GMT

    Is he english Butt?

  • Ali Asim - Saginaw, Michigan USA on June 30, 2007, 16:15 GMT

    Afridi, MoYo, Shoaib Akhtar and the other likes can't be made captains or vice-captains of the team just how Kallis, Chanderpaul, Kevin Pieterson, Tendulkar, McGrath, Warne etc are'nt or were'nt the leaders of their teams. When we talk about leading a side, several things come in account. General behaviour, mental prowess and stability, people management, innovative approach and fighting spirit are a few musts, and I'm sorry to point to some of my fellow bloggers that Afridi, Akhtar, MoYo, and all lack some of these basic points. I agree that they are far better players than poor Salman and sometimes better than Malik also. "BUT", that does'nt qualify them to lead the team. To be a leader, you have to be accomodating and aggressive simultaneously. No one can be more aggressive than Afridi, but his aggression is one dimensional. He lacks general common sense, as we witnessed how he made a fool out of himself on several occassions by immature or rather foolish actions. His talent is in no doubt, I love Afridi and would love to see him prosper and keep fighting like a real Pathan for our team, but he's just not cut out for the top job, just as other top performers out their in other teams. Look at South Africa, they have so many big names with no titles. Why? same reason. Smith is an accomodater, better planner, and a team player. So, when you add all these points up, this looks to be a decent decision. And not to mention, this also solves a long standing problem of shuffling openers. Salman can become an ideal deputy to our rookie captain. Both can start fresh and can begin a start of a long and steady relationship.

  • Moon on June 30, 2007, 15:20 GMT

    i agree with kamran. Salman could be the right choice... but as far as coach is concerned i'd go with niaz that (javed a khan ) 'd the best choice. thanks

  • babu on June 30, 2007, 15:20 GMT

    Salaman Butt and Shoaib Malik are Punjabis.This is the best reason to make them captain and VC.Otherwise both of them should not be even in a team of any test cricket playing country.Look at their batting records, how on earth they can inspire other team members. PCB stands for Punjab Cricket Board.

  • we need inzi on June 30, 2007, 14:46 GMT

    we need another leader like maulan inzi, he was a true leader, it was under his captaincy where pakistan learned that cricket isnt everything and religion is the true calling. pakistan won 5 away test series's under his captaincy including 3-1 test win against australia and 2-0 test win against west indies.

    pakistan also came very very close to winning the 2007 world cup. one thing akram, imran, waqar, miandad could never do.

    please inzi come out of retirement.

  • Said Chaudhry on June 30, 2007, 12:20 GMT

    Im surprised at how everyone here is judging Afridi by his batting perforamances. It just goes to show the lack of knowledge within the fans also. Afridi is a team player, he might have a slump with his bat, but dont look at him that way! Afridi is a bowler who can bat! and excellent fielder and a team man. His presence alone on the field raises the spirits of his team mates & definately gets the crowd roaring. He motivates everyone, he would never fall into anyones trap. Perhap it is his straight-up and Im-not-going-to-be-your-puppet attitude that has kept him from captaincy. Its obvious pcb want a captain and vice captain who would just keep his mouth shut when it comes to selection and wanting players. Seriously, they'd never make someone like Shoaib, MoYo, Afridi or Younis the captain because they will all have demands, to which they have a right. Demands to ask for certain players when required. Anyways, this is all a big joke. Typical PCB, snubbing its great players after using them. Some things will never change. Look at the way Inzi is being treated by the PCB, no central contract or gaurantees of a place in test team (I highly doubt he will be selected). Out of all the test playing nations, except for Australia (maybe), every team would want Inzy to play for them. But PCB has issues far greater than playing a sport.

    Its time us fans give PCB the shaft and buy ourselves and our kids a tennis racket and follow the footsteps of Aisam-ul-Haq.

  • khansahab(A.A.Khan) on June 30, 2007, 12:05 GMT

    Some people have said Afridi should be vice captain. That, in my view, in not different in spirit to saying that Butt should be captain. Afridi brings uncertainty and unpredictability to the proceedings and his hot head doesn’t help. At least Malik and that monster Inzamam had a calm head. The simple truth is that Butt is no good unless he learns how to play in foreign conditions. Imran Nazir, Mohammad Hafeez, Imran Farhat- all these players are fine when they play in the Subcontinent.

    The only two worthy and practicable contenders for the post of VC were Rao and Gul. I state “practicable” because as mentioned earlier Asim Kamal is not part of the squad otherwise he would have made a good choice. I agree with Wasim Saqab that PCB is messing around because it’s still early days and they are trying to find the spark that will ensure the team’s success and stability. But we come to the same argument again that despite the PCB feeling edgy at the moment, they could have still opted for worthier candidates such as Rao or Gul. I don’t think anyone else if left; Yousuf will be like another Inzamam, Younis has discipline problems and refused captaincy, Razzaq is an inept player, Shoaib Akhtar is undisciplined, drugged and unfit, Sami is inconsistent, Asif is drugged and inexperienced, Hafeez is a good player but being used as an opener which means he can’t perform which means he lacks merit, Akmal also suffers from the inconsistency bug not just with his batting but also his glovework. What a predicament for the most talented and exciting side in the world! Ladies and gentlemen, this is………..Pakistan.

  • Mabsoos Ahmad on June 30, 2007, 11:30 GMT

    Dear Kamran Sahib,

    I totally disagree with you on this point that the choice of Salman Butt as a VC is not good. I, think, the PCB is going in the right path now after appointing Shoaib Malik as Captain and now Salman as VC. He has everything which is essential for and he will definitely shoulder the burden along with Shoaib for this younger generation. We should not make hue and cry on this. People are saying that his career would be damaged but, think about other side of life his career may groom. Talent could be tested when you work under pressure and good player has shown their performance under pressure.

  • ahrash on June 30, 2007, 11:29 GMT

    "There are a lot of As-ifs and Butts in my mind in actually choosing the right guy for the job"

    - just want to say thats an excellent line!

  • Bilal on June 30, 2007, 9:56 GMT

    they really did have a choice... asif-drugs afridi-too rash akmal-dont know how long he ll last yousuf-probably too old, considering we are looking towards the future.

    all i can say is that it was a poor decision for the moment one never knows this could just ignite his career. A correct decision for the future, however how well he carries himself in the next 14 months(i.e. india, S.A., australia) could well determine his.

  • Amran on June 30, 2007, 9:30 GMT

    I believe the the PCB have the right decision, in the short term. Before I go any further, ask yourself one question, who are the other 'serious' candidates and list the Pro's and the Con's. The candidates are:

    Shahid Afridi- Pro's: Experienced, Agressive, Committed and Talented Con's: Very emotional (especially when feining to attack spectators) and enigmatic (are his performances consistent and over what period od time?) Shoaib Akhtar: Pro's: Experienced, Talented and Agressive Con's: Will he last a series and is he committed to the team cause? Oh, and the drugs scandal! Mohammed Yousuf: Pro's: Talented, Consistent and Committed! Con's: Fitness will be key, is he fit enough? I' have seen him captain, does he lead!? Mohammed Asif: Pro's: Talented, Committed, Aggressive and can lead through performance! Con's: Is he tactically aware!? Drugs Scandal Salman Butt: Pro's: Talented, Committed and Agressive Con's: Consistent?

    Basically, I believe the PCB had very little choice. Younis Khan was grommed to be captain, and nobody else. That is the mistake that was made! I think Butt will be judged and evaluated over a period of time, and decision will then be made. Shoaib Malik was made captain, because he possesses an certain acumen.

    The success of the team will rely upon the team sprit, and teams 'think tank' approach that was seen recently in Abu Dhabhi.

  • Niaz on June 30, 2007, 8:36 GMT

    iam really glad to c that all the bloggers appreciate my option which i gav for pakistani coach....

    i believe Javed A Khan really doesn't really mind this onus on his shoulder since he has lots of time as well as lots of knowledge about the game and eventually this will let other bloggers to take a long breathe...!

  • Shahzad Arif on June 30, 2007, 7:24 GMT

    Another shock from a shocking sports organistation yet again! Mohammad Asif was given the vice captain's role for one series and now Salman Butt has been handed over the *Title*, who's next in the queue? What I really don't understand is, why PCB is making itself a laughing stock to the rest of the world? Probably Pakistan's most or definitely one of the most richest organistaion/company is so badly managed which gives us a clue of education and experience think-tank have got in that organisation. Salman could just about manage his place in the team and they've handed over the vc role to him! I personally am a big fan of Salman but this one move could really damage his career if it doesn't turn out to be a good one. Why didn't they give Shahid Afridi a chance? He's experienced and in 20/20 he's shown that he could be a good leader. I could just pray for PCB and people managed by this shocking organisation!

  • Ahmed on June 30, 2007, 7:20 GMT

    I personally believe everyone who plays for a national team should fit in to the role of captain and vice-captain.what is required is a long term vision and security.of course international cricketers are professionals.so I also believe any misunderstanding on such issues could be sorted out through communication.question is whether the PCB is professional enough? Insh allah we will see the Pakistan team of Imran Khan and Javid Miandad again..........

  • Saif Abbasi on June 30, 2007, 7:16 GMT

    Salam Mr Abbasi, Salman may be the only choice for VC, players like razaq and afridi dont have the tempramnet and calibre to lead the team in the absence of the captian or otherwise. This doesnot mean the that salman is THE BEST candidate however among the available lot he is more suited to the role

  • Faizaan Sami on June 30, 2007, 6:53 GMT

    afridi doesnt lead, he goes his own way. Kind of like chanderpaul,which is why we dont see him as captain or vc. Kamran Akmal maybe?

  • Nauman on June 30, 2007, 6:49 GMT

    First and foremost, what did Asif do wrong to have vice captaincy snatched from him. He is consistent, talented and merits his place in the team, and didn't do anything visibly bad or wrong in Abu Dhabi, someone needs to explain this. Read someone's comment about Butt being fluent in English, I was surprised at the confidence Asif showed last summer being interview in English before an ODI game along with Kevin Pieterson. Appointing Salman Butt as vice captain is absolutely un-understandable, I am not very well aware of Afridi's incident and reaction, but I think it would be justified as Salman doesn't even have a permanent place in the side (if Imran Farhat and his father-in-law had been polite with selectors and put up a couple of fifties in domestic circuit, he might be holding Butt's place as opener, may be as vice captain too)...this utter randomness needs to be sorted out for good. Looking at performances over the last season, I think the only people who justify their place in both test and ODI sides are Shoaib Malik, Yousuf and Asif...if captaincy and vice captaincy has been up for grabs after dismal World Cup and a complete overhaul, these guys are the ones who deserve the honor. I simply would back Yousuf as the vice captain. PCB talks about promoting youth and preparing for future, I can bet with utmost confidence that Yousuf still has 4-5 years of quality cricket left in him, that time would be enough for the likes of Salman Butt, Imran Farhat, Yasir Hameed, Asif, Umar Gul etc etc to establish themselves at the international levels. The post should have gone to Yousuf, he has earned it. One remark, although irrelevant to this blog is that, PCB is making a big error by ignoring Inzamam as test batsman...its a shame that a great player (no comment on his leadership here) has to beg the board to consider him. Its a shame to see how the likes of Lara, Tendulkar, Vaughan get the backing of their boards through thick and thin, but how a disastrous world cup based upon one bad day against Ireland (in which 9 other batsmen played horrible shots and didn't contribute) puts curtains on an illustrious career. PCB is asking Inzi to prove his fitness, same PCS that was backing him not as a player but as a leader of the side, I can't understand how PCB evaluates Inzamam's loss of fitness and form over a short period of 3 World Cup games. Inzamam deserves a better farewell, the nation owes him one.

  • MKBeg on June 30, 2007, 6:19 GMT

    hey at least he can speak english. besides his batting he can act as his captain's interpreter.

  • Raashid Shunthoo on June 30, 2007, 5:03 GMT

    Salman Butt elevation to the post of vice captain of Pakistan team should be regarded as one of such decisions of PCB where we will have to wait and watch for the impact, if any, will be created by it.The young and talented opener will be doing great service to his country if he consolidates his position and tries to lead his team by example.Although we beleive that other senior players like Afridi, Shoaib & Razzak will feel little upset about this decision but are not likely to cause and imbalance because as of now, they are themselves struggling and are in no way certain about their places in the team.The best thing would be to give Salman support and confidence from all quarters.

  • vivek venkataram on June 30, 2007, 3:55 GMT

    i dont think makin salman butt the vice captain has any sense in da decision because he jimself does nt hold a commanding position in the first 11.A formidable opener he has never trully showed any level of consistency..still he has been appointed the post and lets hope he does well.

  • ubaid on June 30, 2007, 3:17 GMT

    Salman butt is no lee germon. I think this is a good choice he certainly is a better candidate that asif. Those talking about afridi being VC, give me a break. The moron seriously hampered pakistan's chances of winning the world cup when he couldn't keep his head and went after the spectator, how can you trust him with the pressure of any kind of responsibility. If malik can be captain, butt can be vice captain, and if you don't think so, you don't know what you are talking about.

  • Sunny B on June 30, 2007, 2:29 GMT

    Afridi - is awesome luv him to bits... but for VC i don't think he's suitable - you need consistancy... with all do respect Salman has more potential to be consistant than Afridi !!!! This is Salman's chance to cement his place in the team... lets hope he can do that with an ease!!!!

  • EAMIRAN on June 30, 2007, 1:44 GMT

    Salman Butt does not deserve vice captaincy. Infact, he is lucky just to be in the team. For that he can thank an army of inept openers. His record in International cricket is average. Furthermore, his batting technique against the moving ball, like his contemporaries, is extremely poor. Although he is young and can still improve, I just feel his inclusion and promotion was premature. On the bright side, he is a fairly articulate young man, whether he is conversing in Urdu or English. This at least shows a thoughtful person - a beacon amidst a blanket of fog. Whether that is enough to win matches remains doubtful.

    As far as the bus incident is concerned, I would blame Talat Ali, the manager, for ordering someone to vacate their seat for the vice captain. Officious bureacracy at it's worst! If the report was true the feelings within the camp will not have improved. At least not in Afridi's book.

  • Ahmad on June 30, 2007, 1:36 GMT

    Well a Board run on adhoc basis without any constitution, one can expect these decisions. Butt is a player with lot of promise which unfornately has not been materialized yet. Whether he lives up to expectations depends on his performance. In any case we should not worry about this as our beloved Chairman of the Board has penecea of all the ills.

  • Muhammad Umair from Attock Pakistan on June 30, 2007, 1:08 GMT

    I think it is a very good decision to appoint Salman Butt as a vice captain. Many people here are saying that What about Afridi? The only thing about Afridi was his not friendly attitide with some playes of the team just like Shoaib Akhtar. Muhammad Umair

  • Azhar on June 29, 2007, 23:07 GMT

    I also think Afridi keeps getting the short end of the stick. Why not give him the chance? He is not only experienced but young too. Not to mention the support and the crowds he draws.

  • Imran From Rawalpindi on June 29, 2007, 22:11 GMT

    Salaam Everyone I think we are making a big deal out of nothing. To me Being a VC of pakistan is not a responsibility but a label. I agree with khansahab on this point that decision to appoint him VC is only justifiable if it is made with a view that the new found responsibility will translate in him applying himself more at the crease and improving his temperament. Other then that salman butt has a long way to go to estabelish himself as opener and at a same time show that he is capable of being the VC of pakistan. In my honest opinion mohammed yousaf should could have been the right choice for this post not only he has got the experience and calmness but also backing of mohammed yousuf would bring more stability and experience to pakistan dressing room and to shoaib malik as well. PCB is famous for its hasty and poor decision making abilities. PCB should have spokesperson who should brife the nation everytime PCB takes a decision like this as to what were they thinking when they make judgements like that because not only it effects the whole nation but also we become laughing stock in the cricketing world. Thanks

  • Tay'yab-Ali on June 29, 2007, 21:10 GMT

    No Ifs just Butt.

    The entire cricket world mesaures success against the Aussies. This guy has achieved in their back yard. He was just 20 yrs old then when he stroked a superb 70 odd and then a 100 aginst the likes of Mcgrath, Gilespie & Warne.

    Remember his 100 aginst the Indians at Eden gardens and his 100 aginst Englad in the second innings in Multan. And yet he was dropped after one bad tour in England. In fact except for MY & YK everyone failed. This guy is a real talent with the abilty to play the ball very late, hence is success aginst the best on seaming and bouncy wickets. He deserves this promotion.

    I am a bigger Afridi fan; if the reports in the media are correct then he still has not matured which is very dissapointing.

  • swamy on June 29, 2007, 21:08 GMT

    I am little cynical about these selections, where knowing how to speak fluent English seems to automatically give an air of gravitas and intelligence. I as an Indian supporter thought Kapil Dev broken English and all was the best Captain India has ahd so far

    Afridi or Razzaq would have been a better choice

  • Daaniyal Masum on June 29, 2007, 21:01 GMT

    Again..PCB makes a desicion that resides in the absurd.. Salman Butt is not a guaranteed a place in the team just yet. Period. How can he have a smidgen of credibility in this role?

    i go back to what I was screaming for after Inzimam left, ie, make Afridi the Captain. After the captaincy disater that was Inzimam, Afridi's aggressinve, no fear attitude would have been a real lifter for the team. Thats what Pakistan need now, a captain who can take them by the scruff of the neck and get them to fight and fight hard by example and most importantly show no fear in front of teams like the aussies and SA..

    but again, I must eating this common sense candy they keep selling at my corner shop....this is just crazy talk!!!

    so wish you well Despite the PCB Butt Saab!!

  • Abdullah Faiz on June 29, 2007, 20:04 GMT

    Totally a wrong decision. At least 5 years ahead of its time. Afridi was the VC and he proved it in the Abu Dhabi series

  • Ramesh on June 29, 2007, 20:00 GMT

    Pakistan definitely has problems with their opening slot since the very day saeed anwar left. They needed to be consistent with their openers but now its difficult to count how many openers pakistan tried in previous 5 years. Imran nazir was a talent that pakistan wasted big time he had all the shots,aggressive stroke maker & wonderful timer, Afridi is a big disappointment when it comes to consistency...openers are a real worry for this pak side...

  • Zohaib on June 29, 2007, 19:57 GMT

    PCB's another thoughtless decision!!! There is no surprise given that the board is run by someone who spent half his life in the US, loves basketball more than cricket and has only played one first class game. The game is not going to improve unless we correct our board structure, get rid of the the Patron clause and the president's appointee; and overhaul our first class system. Till then keep expecting wonders!!

  • Harris on June 29, 2007, 19:48 GMT

    I think it is a good decision to appoint him the vice captain. I don't see any other person in the current team that really deserves that spot. All the so called "senior" players in the team have proven themselves to be unreliable both in their performance and their attitudes. Let's take a look at them. Shahid Afridi: See-saw performance in both forms of the game. One brilliant innings followed by 15 shameful ones make him far from an automatic selection. His on-field behaviour is anything but model as seen on T.V by millions of cricket fans numerous times. Whether it is "dancing" on the wicket while fielding right infront of the T.V camera lens or taking a swing of the bat on a spectator just before the world cup with a chance of missing the tournament, he has proven that he is not smart enough to lead a national team. Didn't he announce his retirement from test cricket not too long ago before changing hsi mind?

    Shoaib Akhter: Not available to play most of the time thanks to his glass body. He should retire with whatever little dignity he has left. All I ever hear is how threatning and fast he is (mostly coming from himself) but you only get to see him play once or twice a year at most. Has he ever played through an entire series without breaking down? Let's not forget the doping scandal that still hangs over his head like a sword. I say it's time we wrote him off as wasted talent and invested time and money on a better horse.

    Razzaq: He is not even a fraction of his former self. His bowling has declined both in speed and bite. His batting is iffy to say the least and can't be trusted.

    There is noone else to take that spot right now least of all Asif (who came up with that bright idea?). Lets welcome our new vice-captain and I'll be happy to offer him my seat on the team bus. :-)

    P.S If I remember correctly he is also the only player in the team who can speak two full sentences in English infront of millions of viewers and actually make sense. That should count for something too.

  • Kabir, LosAngeles on June 29, 2007, 19:15 GMT

    I am a fan of Salman . Always liked his game. i am happy that they have selected him as vice captain. However I hope its not gonna distract him from his role as opening batsman.I always thought he can be next Saeed anwar. Its time for Pakistan to stay with Shoeb Malik and salam butt for longer time. give them enough time to grow as a effective leader of the team. God spirit with Shoheb and salman.

  • Baber on June 29, 2007, 18:55 GMT

    With due respect to Afridi, he is an old nag in the team. He is been with the team for a long time but, never proved himself as a leader. Salman though does not seam to be ready for this job, but he may do well in the end. Now he does not have to wonder about 11 numbers before the start of the game. May be he is safe on side and will try to concentrate on the other front (batting). I think it’s a premature decision but may be fruitful in the end, not Like Youns. Shoaib Akhtar on the other hand is a spoiled person who, cannot be fixed by any mean.

  • Said Chaudhry on June 29, 2007, 18:54 GMT

    Salman Butt does not deserve to be the vice captain. The whole idea of captaincy in Pakistan seems to be based on a real stupid logic. The idea of captaincy should be based on who has the potential to lead the team, to motivate the team, to bring out the best in everyone, to lead by example..a captain should be someone in whom people can have confidence as a leader, not someone who has hardly played any international level cricket. This is an outrage towards players like M. Yusaf, Afridi & Akhtar. I firmly believe that all three of these players would bring out the best in the team by rallying everyone around them, as opposed to either Malik or Butt. These appointments will only lead to further turmoil and rifts in the team, it already has. And what kind of a rule (re: Talat Ali incident) is *Vice Captains* seat on a *team* bus?! You are a team for crying out loud, how can anyone possibly be given priority. geez! Ive always felt that in Pakistan, there is plenty of skill and talent but the only thing that stops us from becoming a truly great team is the lack of team spirit and the grouping of team into juniors and senior players.

  • WASIM SAQIB on June 29, 2007, 18:39 GMT

    The appointment of Mohammed Asif as Vice Captain was done in haste, especially when his doping case was still looming.

    I believe that Salman is a good choice, it’s true that he has not yet cemented his place in the team, but then as Kamran stated that Salman's appointment as a VC is not a guaranteed route to Captaincy and I would like to add that it also does not guarantee him an automatic selection if he is not performing well, he is being appointed for a short term, just to evaluate, I don't agree with this notion that the added responsibility of Vice captaincy will affect his performance as a batsman, as a professional player he should have the ability to cope with any sort of pressure, and that's the test for him, If he fails then he is not our guy and PCB can appoint somebody else in his place, the team is under going a process of rebuilding and we might see some more changes like this in future, and it will be an exercise in futility to appoint a senior player as VC as almost all the seniors have reached the twilight of their career.

    I have always advocated in the past that Umar gul should be made the VC as Umar always gives his 100% he is still young and has exhibited good behavior on the field, but with so much competition in the fast bowling department I don’t know if he will be able to retain his place in the team in every match and that can be said for other fast bowlers too. PCB for a change has made a good decision and we should support it.

  • Imran from New Jersey on June 29, 2007, 18:29 GMT

    The Butt of the Joke This must be the single worstedecision in the history of Pakistan cricket which now has become no more than a cheap joke.Guys,Have we learnt anything from the humilation of World Cup yet. I call all the loyal fans out there to boycott Pakistan Cricket untill these morons are kicked out . Pakistan Cricket has become a cheap joke by the current Junta,this

  • Dawar, LA USA on June 29, 2007, 17:45 GMT

    It is not very good decision by PCB to make uncertain Salman Butt vice captain of the Pakistan cricket team.

    This captain & vice captain race will damage Pakistan cricket more.

    Look at the history great Miandad was appointed captain at the age of 21. He faced boycott from players like Imran Khan, Majid Khan and Zaheer Abbas. Because all of them were senior and interested to became Pakistan cricket team captain.

    This was the nail screw by Imran and others against Miandad which never go away; we see later Miandad faced same kind of behavior, this time by young players like Wasim akram, Waqar younis & Inzamam ul haq etc. Once again Imran was behind the screen. Please remember, Imran Khan invited whole Pakistan cricket team for dinner at his London resident except the Captain of current cricket team of that time (Javed Miandad) in the tour of England after the 92 world cup.

    First of all PCB need to solve the issues raised by Younis Khan, which makes Yonius Khan to take decision to refuse captainship offer. There must be very valid reasons. Second choice for the captain was Mohd Younis. He is senior and most successful batsman in the team. I do not why PCB makes Shoaib Malik over Mohd Yonius, Shoaib Akhtar and Shahid Afridi.

    PCB makes another wrong decission to make Mohammad Asif as a vice captain. Just after one series PCB realized their mistake. Now this is another bad move to appoint Vice Captain of the team Salman Butt in the presence of Shahid Afridi, Mohd Yousuf and Shoaib Akhtar. They all deserve to be at least vice captain. They have permanent place in the team and shown some leader ship skills esp. Shaihid Afridi showed his leadership skills in ABNRO 20/20 tournament.

    There are many good talented and reliable openers than Butt existed in the country. Khalid Latif, Khurrum Manzoor, Taufeeq Omer, Shahadab Kabir etc. This will be unfair to keep try Salman in the team and do not give chances to Khalid Latif, Khurrum Manzoor, Taufeeq Omer and Shahadab Kabir.

    recently I watched domestic cricket and in some matches Khurrum Manzoor, Khalid Latif palyed against Salman Butt team. Any one can see difference. KHurrum Manzoor is a wonderful opener and excellent fielder same as Khalid latif. Butt performance was not good at all against his oponents. But he is in the team with support but deserving players are out of the team.

    First of all Butt place in the team is not permanent. I never saw any leader ship skills in Salman Butt in any level of cricket.

    How PCB makes those decisions? Please do not test your wrong decission on our cricket team. We have to pay for it. I think some one need to take action and remove all unskilled employees from PCB who are destroying our cricket structure. I do not see any changes even after the miserable performance of our cricket team in World Cup. Still one group wanted to bring back Pakistan number one dictator player Inzi in the test cricket team. He already destroyed enough. Salim Altaf should be removed from the board ASAP.

    No more experiments on national team. This is a proof that cricket board is running by people who do not know cricket well. Recently Javed Miandad also raised his worries about PCB performance and reliability.

    Dawar LA, USA

  • Suhaib Jalis Ahmed on June 29, 2007, 17:39 GMT

    Salman Butt is, in my opinion, a better poener than most of the other choices we have for the opening slot.

    I also believe that he has captained either the U-19 or the Pakistan A team (if not both).

    Ideally what should have happened was that he should not have been dropped in the first place two or three years ago. He should have been given more time to settle in the team, with the concept that he could lead the team 5 years from then.

    THe decision to drop him was a hasty one, and now the decision to make him vice-captain is an even hastier one.

    But then again, I think Asif was a worse choice for the post.

    It is a tough decision to make for the PC, but could have been less tougher if the PCB had planned better.

    There are a lot of As-ifs and Butts in mymind in actually choosing the right guy for the job.

  • Masaood Yunus on June 29, 2007, 17:29 GMT

    There news was already making rounds after the Worldcup that Salman butt migth be elevated to become next Captain. However I strongly believe that PCB has made a serious error of judgement here. Salman Butt might be a good option as a future captain but the only thing right now goes in his favor is his good command of English language. Thats it ! Yes, He is a good talent but then so are tons of others in the contracted 20-30 player pool. He hasn't really done justice to his talent and needs to cement his place in the team first than being given an extra burden of responsibility. I also don't understand when US president visited Pakistan why Salman Butt was one of the players to represent Pakistani team when Shoaib Akhtar, Mohs Asif, Shahid Afridi would have easily and comfortably (speaking english) done the job right. The PCB should ensure they can back their comments "responsibility given to only those players who have a permanent spot in the team" by their actions and yet they failed here again. I absolutely like Salman Butt as a player but PCB has hastily taken this important decision and they might choke the guy under this new responsibility as he is still struggling to cement his place as a first choice in final player 11.

    The PCB drama under Nasim Ashraf continues ... yet again !

  • Nadeem Shahzad on June 29, 2007, 16:59 GMT

    Salman butt's appointment makes little sense, Yes ive seen him captain a domestic team in the 20twenty cup, has some potentials but certainly still needs to develop as a player before being handed another responsibility. Yes i agree responsibility can make his more mature but can also have the opposite effect. He needs to spend more time in being better at what he does, that is batting a tremendous player no doubt and can be a great prospect for Pakistan, But Shoaib Malik needs an allround Deputy, someone more established, someone like Afridi. Afridi would have been the ideal choice, Shoaib's captancy still lacks the killer touch to it and im sure by adding the aggressive touch of Afridi we can almost guarantee a force to be reckon with.

    My Pick Shahid Afridi for Vice Captancy, Iftikhar Anjum lets his balling do the talking, So did Inzi with his bat. We dont need slackers in the field. We need ppl with creative and agressive heads.

  • Yassar on June 29, 2007, 16:14 GMT

    The PCB is an organisation that takes 1 step forward and 2 steps back.

    The ridiculous appointment of Salman Butt as vice-captain is testament to this mad thinking. How can an individual who is not even guaranteed a place in the squad of either the test or the ODI team be named vice-captain.

    Salman Butt may well have leadership credentials and a potential long term successor to Shoaib Malik but the reality is he has not produced consistent enough results with the bat so far to justify a place in either squads.

    A player must first justify his selection through his performance only then should they be considered for any leadership roles with the team. In today’s competitive environment we can not afford to carry players just because they may have leadership qualities.

    Besides the above there are players within the squad who have been performing better and can also claim to have leadership qualities…one of those being Shahid Afridi.

  • Musstanser Tinauli on June 29, 2007, 15:39 GMT

    Ahh! Salman butt?? Who in the world is he? The only issue here is PCB just cant learn from their mistakes...

    It had to be AFRIDI! and thats It. One word for PCB, Please grow up! Signing off, Musstanser.

  • Taha Ahsan on June 29, 2007, 15:22 GMT

    I really do not understand why Salman Butt would be apointed captain when he has yet to secure a place for himself in both ODI & Test Cricket. Mohammed Asif was by far the best choice, if a youth had to be appointed. In addition, you have Mohammed Yousuf and Shahid Afridi that would have been by far the most expereinced and deserving people.

    P.S: Can anyone please explain me as to why Salman Butt? I do not question his talent but why a cricketer who has not even been a regular or performed in any such way that would display leadership, team spirit and determination. Can anyone please explain why was he even considered?

  • mirza sahib on June 29, 2007, 14:56 GMT

    in short, another blunder, in a long, long, long list, oh when will our patron saints learn?

  • Muhammad Asif on June 29, 2007, 14:55 GMT

    The vice-captaincy is a trifling thing that can be gifted and withdrawn on a whim. It is not a guaranteed route to the captaincy.

    Since like everyone you also know that vice-captaincy is not a route to captaincy, then why are you wasting our precious time for the sake of a new thread.

  • Samraiz on June 29, 2007, 14:36 GMT

    Salman Butt would make a good vc but what about Afridi?

  • RAZA on June 29, 2007, 14:21 GMT

    Kamran, very well said. I totally agree with all of your views. But i still believe the decision made byPCB to give Salman Butt the vice-captaincy is a good one. Because supoosedly ego problems of players like Afridi, Razzaq is a hindrance in the team, and they think they can do the job of leading. I honestly think Razzaq is not cut for this job, Afridi is a 50-50 choice. But prescence of Shoaib Akhtar may counter any imbalances, as he is the real spirited fighter, and is raring to go.

  • Usman Majeed RWP, Pakistan on June 29, 2007, 14:13 GMT

    Well, this really is not a good decesion to appoint him the vice captain. If PCB think tank had noticed that this man has the potential to lead the team in future, they should have told Mr.Butt that you need to concentrate on your batting first to cement your place in the side and then should be in the race for the leadership, because to me he is really struggling to find a place in the squad and this added responsibility might effect him especially in the presence of sernior members. This point becomes more valid due to the fact that the captain is also not a senior guy.

    And whatever the Manager is saying, even a 5 year kid can pick that the incident of Shahid Afridi (for the seat in the bus) really shows 'not a friendly' environment in the dressing room.Mr.Butt is the vice-captain untill december so thats a serious concern as well.

    Anyways, in the end i have no other option but to say Good Luck to Salman Butt and the Pakistan Cricket Team but i seriously think that there were some potential cadidates present in the camp for vice-captaincy.

  • Tanveer on June 29, 2007, 14:07 GMT

    Salman Butt really has not proven his talent so far; apart from a few good innings mostly he has been inconsistent with the bat. And now elevating him to the level of vice captain will further burden him - keep in mind, Salman has not solidified his place in the team yet. He can be out from the team again with another streak of bad form. I think Salman needs to mature more and become more responsible, learn from his past mistakes and be consistent. Having age on his side, he can become a good opening batsman for years to come.

  • khansahab(A.A.Khan) on June 29, 2007, 13:53 GMT

    I have already spoken about Butt at some length but perhaps I should reiterate the main points. Butt’s talent is not disputed and I think he is the most gifted specialist opener in Pakistan at present. He however lacks temperament and shot selection skills which affects his consistency. The reason why he lacks temperament is because he is not mature enough. He is still a young man and relies on impulse rather than logic. He lacks shot selection skills because he is inexperienced.

    This decision to appoint him VC is only justifiable if it is made with a view that the new found responsibility will translate in him applying himself more at the crease and improving his temperament. Every other justification (if there are any) is invalid because Salman is not experienced, not consistent and also is not a regular bowler or exceptional fielder that may justify this decision. He does not deserve this appointment if we consider merit. If someone says that he should be made VC because he is the most fluent English speaker, it is a totally botched argument. What good will his language skills do if he is not a good player? Mohammad Sami after his stint with Kent improved his English substantially, he is also an inconsistent player like Salman and he is also a (relative) youngster. Does this mean he should be made captain?

    I think the player who really deserves an appointment as VC is Rao Ifthikar, who is an unpretentious and effective bowling all-rounder. He does not have the glamour or show of Shoaib Akhtar or Mohammad Asif, but he lets his bowling do all the talking. If Asim Kamal’s career had not been destroyed by Wasim Bari and Inzamam, he would have been a good choice for VC; humble, tactical, tenacious and assiduous.

    This is another unnecessary and unproductive measure undertaken by PCB, like that two week fielding training by Jonty Rhodes which cost a lot of money but did not result in anything substantial. Asif was made VC for only one series and Butt will be asking questions whether his new appointment has any longevity. In my opinion, the reason it may well have some sort of duration is because after the unimportant Twenty20 Cup, Pakistan play in the Subcontinent for a few months and Butt has a decent record in that region.

    I wish Salman Bhatt all the luck but the point of regret is that there were more deserving players for this promotion. That is why there was a heated incident orchestrated by Shahid Afridi after the news of Butt’s promotion, but that incident seems to have been played down by the PCB.

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  • khansahab(A.A.Khan) on June 29, 2007, 13:53 GMT

    I have already spoken about Butt at some length but perhaps I should reiterate the main points. Butt’s talent is not disputed and I think he is the most gifted specialist opener in Pakistan at present. He however lacks temperament and shot selection skills which affects his consistency. The reason why he lacks temperament is because he is not mature enough. He is still a young man and relies on impulse rather than logic. He lacks shot selection skills because he is inexperienced.

    This decision to appoint him VC is only justifiable if it is made with a view that the new found responsibility will translate in him applying himself more at the crease and improving his temperament. Every other justification (if there are any) is invalid because Salman is not experienced, not consistent and also is not a regular bowler or exceptional fielder that may justify this decision. He does not deserve this appointment if we consider merit. If someone says that he should be made VC because he is the most fluent English speaker, it is a totally botched argument. What good will his language skills do if he is not a good player? Mohammad Sami after his stint with Kent improved his English substantially, he is also an inconsistent player like Salman and he is also a (relative) youngster. Does this mean he should be made captain?

    I think the player who really deserves an appointment as VC is Rao Ifthikar, who is an unpretentious and effective bowling all-rounder. He does not have the glamour or show of Shoaib Akhtar or Mohammad Asif, but he lets his bowling do all the talking. If Asim Kamal’s career had not been destroyed by Wasim Bari and Inzamam, he would have been a good choice for VC; humble, tactical, tenacious and assiduous.

    This is another unnecessary and unproductive measure undertaken by PCB, like that two week fielding training by Jonty Rhodes which cost a lot of money but did not result in anything substantial. Asif was made VC for only one series and Butt will be asking questions whether his new appointment has any longevity. In my opinion, the reason it may well have some sort of duration is because after the unimportant Twenty20 Cup, Pakistan play in the Subcontinent for a few months and Butt has a decent record in that region.

    I wish Salman Bhatt all the luck but the point of regret is that there were more deserving players for this promotion. That is why there was a heated incident orchestrated by Shahid Afridi after the news of Butt’s promotion, but that incident seems to have been played down by the PCB.

  • Tanveer on June 29, 2007, 14:07 GMT

    Salman Butt really has not proven his talent so far; apart from a few good innings mostly he has been inconsistent with the bat. And now elevating him to the level of vice captain will further burden him - keep in mind, Salman has not solidified his place in the team yet. He can be out from the team again with another streak of bad form. I think Salman needs to mature more and become more responsible, learn from his past mistakes and be consistent. Having age on his side, he can become a good opening batsman for years to come.

  • Usman Majeed RWP, Pakistan on June 29, 2007, 14:13 GMT

    Well, this really is not a good decesion to appoint him the vice captain. If PCB think tank had noticed that this man has the potential to lead the team in future, they should have told Mr.Butt that you need to concentrate on your batting first to cement your place in the side and then should be in the race for the leadership, because to me he is really struggling to find a place in the squad and this added responsibility might effect him especially in the presence of sernior members. This point becomes more valid due to the fact that the captain is also not a senior guy.

    And whatever the Manager is saying, even a 5 year kid can pick that the incident of Shahid Afridi (for the seat in the bus) really shows 'not a friendly' environment in the dressing room.Mr.Butt is the vice-captain untill december so thats a serious concern as well.

    Anyways, in the end i have no other option but to say Good Luck to Salman Butt and the Pakistan Cricket Team but i seriously think that there were some potential cadidates present in the camp for vice-captaincy.

  • RAZA on June 29, 2007, 14:21 GMT

    Kamran, very well said. I totally agree with all of your views. But i still believe the decision made byPCB to give Salman Butt the vice-captaincy is a good one. Because supoosedly ego problems of players like Afridi, Razzaq is a hindrance in the team, and they think they can do the job of leading. I honestly think Razzaq is not cut for this job, Afridi is a 50-50 choice. But prescence of Shoaib Akhtar may counter any imbalances, as he is the real spirited fighter, and is raring to go.

  • Samraiz on June 29, 2007, 14:36 GMT

    Salman Butt would make a good vc but what about Afridi?

  • Muhammad Asif on June 29, 2007, 14:55 GMT

    The vice-captaincy is a trifling thing that can be gifted and withdrawn on a whim. It is not a guaranteed route to the captaincy.

    Since like everyone you also know that vice-captaincy is not a route to captaincy, then why are you wasting our precious time for the sake of a new thread.

  • mirza sahib on June 29, 2007, 14:56 GMT

    in short, another blunder, in a long, long, long list, oh when will our patron saints learn?

  • Taha Ahsan on June 29, 2007, 15:22 GMT

    I really do not understand why Salman Butt would be apointed captain when he has yet to secure a place for himself in both ODI & Test Cricket. Mohammed Asif was by far the best choice, if a youth had to be appointed. In addition, you have Mohammed Yousuf and Shahid Afridi that would have been by far the most expereinced and deserving people.

    P.S: Can anyone please explain me as to why Salman Butt? I do not question his talent but why a cricketer who has not even been a regular or performed in any such way that would display leadership, team spirit and determination. Can anyone please explain why was he even considered?

  • Musstanser Tinauli on June 29, 2007, 15:39 GMT

    Ahh! Salman butt?? Who in the world is he? The only issue here is PCB just cant learn from their mistakes...

    It had to be AFRIDI! and thats It. One word for PCB, Please grow up! Signing off, Musstanser.

  • Yassar on June 29, 2007, 16:14 GMT

    The PCB is an organisation that takes 1 step forward and 2 steps back.

    The ridiculous appointment of Salman Butt as vice-captain is testament to this mad thinking. How can an individual who is not even guaranteed a place in the squad of either the test or the ODI team be named vice-captain.

    Salman Butt may well have leadership credentials and a potential long term successor to Shoaib Malik but the reality is he has not produced consistent enough results with the bat so far to justify a place in either squads.

    A player must first justify his selection through his performance only then should they be considered for any leadership roles with the team. In today’s competitive environment we can not afford to carry players just because they may have leadership qualities.

    Besides the above there are players within the squad who have been performing better and can also claim to have leadership qualities…one of those being Shahid Afridi.