June 28, 2001

Pakistan want Waqar to continue as captain


Waqar Younis will be asked to continue as Pakistan captain following a two-month stint in the job, said General Tauqir Zia, chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board.

The board appointed fast bowler Waqar in April for a tournament in Sharjah and a two-month tour of England. Under his captaincy Pakistan reached the final in Sharjah, drew a two-Test series against England and lost to world champions Australia in the final of a three-nation one-day competition.

Waqar, who also captained Pakistan in a one-day match and a Test in 1993, has a 2-1 record leading the side in Tests and 10-5 in limited-over internationals. He's one of ten players to have captained Pakistan in the past ten years.

"We've had our problems with captains, but Waqar is a very hard-working man and has handled the side well," Zia said. "I will keep him as captain as long as I feel he is fit mentally and physically."

Zia said he wants to appoint the 29-year-old Waqar for New Zealand's tour of Pakistan in September and the Asian Test Championship, which runs from September to February. Waqar travelled straight to Australia after the tour to be with his wife who is expecting a baby, Zia said.

Meantime, Richard Pybus, whose contract as national team coach ran just for the England tour, has also been asked to continue, Zia said. Pybus will make his decision in the next ten days after considering his future at his home in South Africa.