Pakistan news January 27, 2009

Younis may replace Malik as captain


Frontrunner: Younis Khan © AFP

Reports have emerged on Tuesday, following Pakistan's disastrous ODI series loss to Sri Lanka last week, that Younis Khan has been approached to replace Shoaib Malik as captain. Cricinfo has learnt that the board chairman, Ijaz Butt, summoned Younis from a Quaid-e-Azam Trophy match for Habib Bank at the Gaddafi Stadium for an emergency meeting that lasted approximately 15 minutes.

Pakistan news channel Geo, quoting unnamed board sources, said the result of the meeting was that Younis had been offered the captaincy and that he had accepted it. A source close to Younis, however, told Cricinfo he hadn't accepted it yet.

"He has been offered the captaincy, but the important thing for him is that he wants it on his own terms and conditions. As far as I know he hasn't accepted it just yet," the source said. "The offer, like before, comes at a difficult time for Pakistan cricket and that will play a part."

The reference to the past was when Younis was first offered the captaincy after a disastrous 2007 World Cup, when Inzamam-ul-Haq stepped down and retired from ODIs. He had been groomed for the role for two years prior to that as vice-captain, and only after he refused was it offered to Malik.

Younis had turned down the captaincy previously as well, in October 2006, when he replaced Inzamam briefly for the Champions Trophy in India. After he announced that he wasn't going to take up the captaincy and walked out of a press conference, he was eventually convinced by a new board chairman to lead the team.

Soon after the meeting on Tuesday, senior board officials and members of the team management as well as the selection committee held a meeting of their own with the chairman. The second meeting was to ostensibly discuss the fallout from the series; Intikhab Alam and team manager Yawar Saeed handed in their report of the series during the meeting.

If the reports are confirmed, it will end an unsettled period of leadership for Malik. Though his ODI results are impressive on the surface, they hide a string of wins against minnows such as Bangladesh and Zimbabwe. More crucial to understanding the pressure to remove him at the moment is the statistic against bigger opponents. The Sri Lanka series loss means that Pakistan has now lost series against every major nation they played under Malik: in 2007-08 they lost both the Test and ODI series against South Africa at home and away to India.

There have also been persistent reports of an uneasy relationship with senior players such as Mohammad Yousuf and Shoaib Akhtar. Yousuf has criticised Malik publicly since he moved to the ICL while Malik openly questioned Shoaib's commitment during the Sri Lanka ODIs, before swiftly backtracking on his remarks.

Osman Samiuddin is Pakistan editor of Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Mansoor on January 27, 2009, 15:06 GMT

    Malik had to go after such a poor performance. Good decision by the PCB Management to get in younis though Misbah was also a very strong and a good candidate to lead the side. But nonetheless younis is one of your best batsman and he should be able to get the boys united and get rid of the dirty politics which are seriously effecting the performance of the team. One thing is for sure he is going to fight for the deserving players who need to get selected in either form of the game whether its Asim Kamal, Kamran Hussain,Saeed Bin Nasir,Mohammad Talha or Mohammad Aamir.

  • Ray on January 27, 2009, 14:32 GMT

    Another unfortunate episode for the Pakistan team. I think it was premature in appointing Shoaib - he would have been a good choice down the road. Younis' tempramental behaviour has been damaging for Pakistan in the last two years - wish he had assumed the role when he was previously offered. The board should make changes and drop Akmal, its high time. Yousuf should be brought back and so should Asif (he should be provided with the services of a psychologist as well). Shoaib Akthar should be shown the door too. Malik, should be in the team, his performance as a player is better than most. And Misbah should be put under scrutiny - hasn't performed in the last year. Abdul Razzak can be tried again in ODI's too. I don't agree that Afridi should be dropped - his bowling is pretty steady and his fielding is better than almost everyone. He should be councelled to focus on his batting again - he should come out good. I hope that Pakistan is back on the platform of good teams.

  • Chanaka on January 27, 2009, 14:30 GMT

    Sad situation for Pakistan Cricket this not the first time & the past repeating again & again.Cricket selectors should identify & build a strongest person in the squad as a captain as example like srilankan captain Jayawardane.Unfortunately we cannot see any improvement in pakistan cricket administration. we dont wanted to see same thing what happened to Zimbabwe to be happen to Pakistan. As a great fan of fast bowlers I think pakistan is the home for the fast bowlers.looking forward to see a permanent strong captain for the Pakistan team

    Pakistan fan from Srilanka

  • Muhammad on January 27, 2009, 14:26 GMT

    The change is welcoming and much awaited. But I still doubt the talent of current pakistani players. Few of them must be removed from squad to bring some life. Kamran Akmal should face axe for sure. Malik does not hold his place in squad and same stands for Misbah. Yousuf should be inducted and new players should be given full confidence and tried. Pakistani team needs an aggressive player in the middle order who must be oozing aggression and confidence. This team looks very sober and tame at times.

  • Nasir on January 27, 2009, 14:10 GMT

    It was great lottery for Shoaib Malik to be named the captain of Pakistan. He was fortunate enough to be given a prolonged run, and the end is not as bad as it could have been. I still hope he can keep his place in the side and can focus on his own performance. He has shown signs of being a good batting allrounder but not have cemented his place till yet. I feel it will be difficult for him to retain no 4 spot as batter.

    Well Younis Khan the new Pakistan captain, all the well wishes are for him. In my view Pakistan donot have a better option other than him at the moment, nor they had for a while. Younis has shown touches of charismatism. Now that the team is in the re-building stage and senior players are strugling to perofrm, it is good chance for Younis to hold the gears and move the vehicles the way he wishes. I am positively hopeful he is capable to take Pakistan to top three in all three forms of cricket, and even better in the long run. Allah may help you Younis, best of luck

  • Rehan on January 27, 2009, 13:59 GMT

    i simply don't understand what is happening with pakistan cricket, younis khan let pcb and whole nation down once and now pcb is appointing him as captain again? and the other thing i dnt undrstand is why he always talk abt i want captancy on my own terms what is exactly his terms are i think he is tryign to copy IMRAN KHAN which he will never ever be able too, he should think abt his performance first rather thn saying i want captancy on my own term wht he did in last 10 games for pakistan (Scoring 3 fifties in 3 games againts team like bangladesh or Zimbabwe is not a big deal) and wht happend to him in 3 games againts Srilanka (only 28 runs in 3 games) that is what is calibre is i think he should just play as a player not to get involve in this captancy business i think shoaib malik is better thn him and he should concentrate on in performance rather thn captancy thx Ray

  • Ahmer on January 27, 2009, 13:37 GMT

    Younis has now been appointed captain by PCB..My good wishes to Mr.Khan

  • AnilKumar on January 27, 2009, 13:20 GMT

    This is the best thing that can happen to Pakistan Cricket,now. He is the only one in that squad with some real leadership quality. He is gentle, matured and well mannered with good cricketing brain. Cricket world needs Pakistan back in their power as in the era of the 2Ws. As a cricket fan, I would like to see them challenging India with some consistent aggressive cricket. The passion with which the Pakistan team is remembered should be brought back and Younis Khan is capable of that, and what he needs is some natural talents like Asif.

  • taimur on January 27, 2009, 13:16 GMT

    I agree Afridi and Akmal deserved to be dropped but Rohanbala you are wrong about Malik since he has been a consistent performer for a while now. He also averages 43.5 since being appointed captain. And performed well in the 20-20 world cup as well.

  • taimur on January 27, 2009, 13:05 GMT

    Younis Khan failed in all 3 of his innings against Srilanka when he was needed to step up especially since the Pakistani team was missing their most reliable ODI batsman Mohammed Yousuf. Further, he clearly does not want to lead the team and neither has he recently captained a domestic side. How is he the best candidate? and what is the point of reinstating Malik as captain when after one series loss he will be removed. It can also be seen that Malik is the best option Pakistan has and his abilities as captain cannot be considered poor since both teams he has led in the domestic season have won (Sialkot Stallions won with a much weaker team than others). All those who saw the series ball by ball as I did would say that it was visible that our resources were clearly weaker than Srilanka's. Even if Ponting was to lead this side it would not fair any better. The batsman were clearly rusty apart from Butt and Malik while the bowlers failed to get any movement after the first over.

  • No featured comments at the moment.