New age October 21, 2008

Debate for the future 3: Button it Mr Butt

The chairmanship of the Pakistan Cricket Board holds a mesmeric attraction for glory seekers

The chairmanship of the Pakistan Cricket Board holds a mesmeric attraction for glory seekers. Each time a new head is appointed, the great unwashed hope that a man with wisdom, ideas, integrity, and discretion is chosen. Invariably, we are disappointed.

A particularly worrying prognostic factor has been the desire of a new chairman to share each half-baked opinion with the peoples of the world.

PCB chairmen seem to forget that in our web 2.0 society, every utterance is broadcast around the planet in milliseconds. Perhaps I misjudge these men of verbal diarrhoea? They are probably doing it deliberately to extract every morsel of attention that they can from us dumbstruck souls.

Mr Butt's start has been especially troublesome. Despite some early hopes that he might have the nous to fix a fractured organisation, his instant explosion of revelations and judgements suggests that wisdom, integrity, and discretion are not his idea of how to rebuild Pakistan cricket.

The most disturbing announcement is the decision not to renew Geoff Lawson's contract. Without doubt, Lawson has taken on the coaching role at a time when the PCB is in greatest disarray and the team's captaincy and spirit is most feeble. To judge Lawson in these circumstances is nonsensical. To publicly denounce Lawson many months before his contract is ended is illogical, insensitive, and ill-advised.

Mr Butt may be right in certain of his actions, such as investigating the financial irregularities of the previous regime, but it would be best for Pakistan cricket if he could bring himself to button it.

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