Pakistan news January 21, 2014

Whatmore delighted with 'perfect' send-off

ESPNcricinfo staff

Dav Whatmore has commended the Pakistan team for giving him the "perfect" send-off as his coaching tenure with the team came to an end in the form of an exciting five-wicket victory over Sri Lanka to draw the Test series in the UAE 1-1. It had been announced last November that he would step down as Pakistan head coach following the conclusion of the series.

Pakistan chased down a difficult 302-run target on the final day of the third Test, with Azhar Ali leading the way by compiling a fifth Test hundred, while Misbah-ul-Haq and Sarfraz Ahmed sealed the contest with crucial knocks.

"[I am] absolutely delighted. It's a satisfying win and a perfect gift the boys have given me on my departure," said Whatmore. "I am leaving the Pakistan Cricket Board on amicable terms, but it's not a case of leaving Pakistan and not wanting ever to come back.

"I am sure that I will be back in a different capacity, sooner rather than later. I will always look forward to coming back to Pakistan."

Whatmore confirmed that the victory was definitely one of the highlights of his coaching career. "This victory [against Sri Lanka] will be ranked up there with the (one-day) series win in India and one-day win in South Africa (2013) and the Asia Cup, are pretty decent to start with. When we arrived we were not given any chances in South Africa so there were some high points."

He also stated the team's future will be determined not by the legacy he has left, but rather how the new coach, when appointed, would fare over the next coming months.

"It is for the next coach to do the [future development]. The nucleus is there. We have to pay a little bit more attention to the eleven we play. The will is there and that is a major asset."

Whatmore took over as coach in March 2012 from Mohsin Khan. Prior to that, he had also coached Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.