|Photos||Video & Audio||Blogs||Statistics||Archive||Shop||Mobile|
July 1, 2014
Waqar Younis, Pakistan's new head coach, has said he will bring the same passion and mindset to the job as he did during his first term with the national side. He said he had learned a lot from his previous stint, and that his top priority was preparing the side for the 2015 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
He had previously served as bowling coach of the Pakistan side in 2006-07 and briefly in 2009, and as head coach in 2010-11, when he quit over a reported rift with Shahid Afridi. Waqar began his second term on Monday and will have a one-week camp with the team before the tour of Sri Lanka in August.
"I have come with a positive frame of mind, there's no doubt about it," Waqar said at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. "I have come with a better plan, I think the team could get better with changes and we can match any team in international cricket. I was here two years ago and you people saw there was improvement in the team.
"I have come with a lot of passion and the mindset will be the same, we will play positive cricket and will play to win, there's no defence involved in it. Hopefully the boys will understand what I am trying to say and I hope this passion will be there in them as well. I believe the youngsters are very talented, they will understand the spirit."
Waqar has about eight months to get the team ready for the World Cup and he did not hint at any major changes in the set-up. "It's the right time, when I came last time our team was in a similar situation, there are lots of youngsters and I am excited to meet them and work with them.
"Ten months (sic. eight) time is a long time, we are getting cricket against Australia and New Zealand and then we have 15 days before the World Cup, there's no reason we can't prepare. Obviously there are short-term goals at the moment as we have plenty of cricket this year and we won't be neglecting them."
Pakistan play Sri Lanka, Australia and New Zealand, giving them at least seven Tests, 13 ODIs and three T20s before the World Cup. "The target is of course the World Cup but the other series are also important," Waqar said. "I know our people are very emotional, every ball, every over, every match will be important and I hope the team will deliver and the tours will be successful to build up strongly to the World Cup."
Waqar hoped Pakistan would name a long-term captain, rather than on a series-by-series basis. PCB chairman Najam Sethi had confirmed that Misbah-ul-Haq would remain captain at least until the World Cup, but there frequent reports to the contrary.
"Captain remains under fire all the time, if you look at Pakistan cricket it's been the same trend," Waqar said. "I know a sword keeps hanging on the captain and it should be like that, the captain has to be on his toes. But instead of series-to-series we have to think about a long-term captain, you have to think about youngsters for Test, one-day and Twenty20 because if you look there are two-three players who are on the wrong side of 30."
Waqar brought a sudden end to his successful first term as coach, citing personal reasons amid reports of a rift with Afridi, while Ijaz Butt was the PCB chairman. He said his relationship with the player was now a clean slate.
"With the passage of time, when one lives like a family, there are problems but a good coach is one who negates those and takes all players together," Waqar said. "Last time was my first time as a head coach, and now I will try to see that if there were some mistakes committed, it won't be repeated."
Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. @kalsonFeeds: Umar Farooq
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
|Comments have now been closed for this article
As West Indies play their 500th Test, here's an interactive journey through their Test history
Also, high scores and low averages, most ducks in international cricket, and the 12-year-old Test player
In their pomp, West Indies had a 53-13 win-loss record; in their last 99, it is 16-53. That, in a nutshell, shows how steep the decline has been
Former New Zealand seamer Gavin Larsen talks about wobbly seam-up bowling, the 1992 World Cup, and his role in the next tournament
Following the bowling ban on Saeed Ajmal, ESPNcricinfo picks five bowlers Pakistan may replace him with for the time being
The thrills are rather low-octane, the skills are a bit lightweight, and the tournament overly India-centric
Teams need to start strategising now for next year's event by picking the right men for various roles. England need to get on it sooner than most
The planned reorganisation of their domestic structure should help the region recapture some of the glory it enjoyed in the past
Hundred in a session? Easy peasy for Doug Walters