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Mushtaq Ahmed loses England role

Andrew McGlashan

May 11, 2014

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England bowling coach Mushtaq Ahmed and batting coach Graham Gooch at England's training session, Lord's, June 1 2011
Mushtaq Ahmed will move into a role with the Pakistan team © Getty Images
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Confirmation arrived on Monday that Mushtaq Ahmed, the former Pakistan legspinner, is the latest of England's backroom staff to lose their job in the Peter Moores reshuffle.* David Saker, the fast bowling coach, will continue with his current deal under the new set-up though.

Mushtaq was recruited by Moores in 2008, during his previous spell as England coach, after the pair had been together at Sussex when they won their first Championship title in 2003.

Mushtaq was involved in an era where Graeme Swann became one of England's greatest ever spinners, but he leaves with English spin bowling in one of its leanest patches with the strong possibility that they will not field a frontline spinner against Sri Lanka next month.

The decision, originally reported in the Guardian, did not come as a complete surprise for Mushtaq who had recently applied for a position with the Pakistan team which is also now under a returning head coach in Waqar Younis. The PCB confirmed that Mushtaq was in competition with Saqlain Mushtaq for the spin coach role, but came out on top.

Moores is keen to reduce the number of specialist coaches who are involved with England on match days, so Mushtaq was cut. Instead Peter Such, who looks after the spin programme at the academy in Loughborough, is expected to fill the role when required.

Mushtaq joins Graham Gooch, the former batting coach, and Richard Halsall, the fielding coach, in not retaining their roles under what is becoming an extensive restructuring exercise.

Saker, however, will be remain and will work with the young quick bowlers selected to play alongside the senior pair of James Anderson and Stuart Broad.

England's decision to take an attack full of tall quicks to Australia, and their subsequent failings, raised questions about Saker's role especially after the dramatic loss of form by Steven Finn. However, he can rightly point to the development of Anderson and Broad under his guidance, plus England's sustained period of success from 2009-2013, as factors in his favour. Last October he signed a contract that took him up to September 2015, which includes the next Ashes series.

England's backroom staff is gradually taking shape ahead of the start of Sri Lanka's visit which begins with a T20 later this month. Gooch's replacement is yet to be confirmed - Graham Thorpe and Mark Ramprakash remain favourites - while the future of Bruce French, the wicketkeeping coach, is still to be rubber stamped. With Moores and Paul Frabrace in position it is unlikely England will need a regular keeping specialist with the national side.

With inputs from Umar Farooq in Pakistan

*10.20GMT, May 12: This article was updated after Mushtaq Ahmed was named Pakistan's new bowling consultant

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by android_user on (May 12, 2014, 15:07 GMT)

I think Collingwood or Strauss can be gud coach

Posted by Aroundthelegsgoogly on (May 12, 2014, 14:37 GMT)

Mushi loses England spin coach job because England don't have any spin talent.

Posted by YorkshirePudding on (May 12, 2014, 10:24 GMT)

@Paul rone-Clarke, you can hardly blame Saker for Tremlett, he wasn't taking wickets at Surrey last season and was a yard or more down on pace last season.

finn, I think most of his problems were caused because he had to change his action to prevent him hitting the stumps, so was more focused on that than the delivery.

In the end Saker probably keeps his job for at least the summer, though I expect hes on noticed that the bowling needs to improve or he'll be looking for a new position next year.

Posted by Haleos on (May 12, 2014, 8:03 GMT)

I dont see any impact Musshie had on the team anyway. It would be great if they can have someone who can communicate with the players well.

Posted by jackiethepen on (May 12, 2014, 7:06 GMT)

It seems odd that Pakistan who are masters of spin believe it is very important to have a spin bowling coach and England who now have only part time spinners think they can manage on their own? Something surely is wrong? Flower rated Saker highly. So this decision is part contractual and part Flower legacy.

Posted by   on (May 12, 2014, 6:43 GMT)

David Saker must also be asked to leave his position. He seems to be achieving absolutely nothing in the role. As for Mushy, being a top class leggie himself, you have to wonder how much coaching he can do with mostly finger spinners in the English game. Perhaps Swanny himself could do the job?

Posted by EdwinD on (May 12, 2014, 6:31 GMT)

Why on Earth does any international team need specialist batting, fielding or bowling coaches??!! At that level the players should be good enough to perform, think for themselves and get results. It's not as if the game at County level is any different.....

Posted by disco_bob on (May 12, 2014, 0:13 GMT)

England should try and snap up Lillee while the opportunity is here. Finn would be a worthwhile challenge.

Posted by   on (May 11, 2014, 23:50 GMT)

@Shane Bond taking nuthing away from Swann yes he did the hard work but ou need an advice a training for what exactly he should work on and what things they are missing so coming back to your point Mushi trains Swann without a good coach Swann will be just a regular bowler.

Posted by   on (May 11, 2014, 21:05 GMT)

I think our spin department is doing fine, ajmal has loads of experience and probably a good guide for the youngsters.How about we get a top level batting coach and hammer out the technical flaws of Pakistani batsmen?Graham Gooch?

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Andrew McGlashanClose
Andrew McGlashan Assistant Editor Andrew arrived at ESPNcricinfo via Manchester and Cape Town, after finding the assistant editor at a weak moment as he watched England's batting collapse in the Newlands Test. Andrew began his cricket writing as a freelance covering Lancashire during 2004 when they were relegated in the County Championship. In fact, they were top of the table when he began reporting on them but things went dramatically downhill. He likes to let people know that he is a supporter of county cricket, a fact his colleagues will testify to and bemoan in equal quantities.
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