Pakistan in Sri Lanka 2009 August 4, 2009

Former players slam PCB for defeats

Cricinfo staff
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Former Pakistan players have demanded major changes in the Pakistan Cricket Board's setup and have asked the senior team management to take responsibility for the defeats in the Tests and ODI series against Sri Lanka and resign.

After the high of the World Twenty20 win against the same team in June, Pakistan's fortunes swung in Sri Lanka when they lost the Tests 2-0 despite finding themselves in strong positions in all three games. They're already trailing 3-0 in the ODIs, with only pride to play for in the two remaining games.

Former captain Aamer Sohail said the decision to experiment with makeshift openers was baffling.

"No one, from the board officials to the team management, seems to have a clear plan in mind," Sohail told AFP. "Some of the decisions make no sense, like two regular openers were sent to Sri Lanka but we used makeshift openers in the series which we have lost now."

Another former captain, Zaheer Abbas, said the blame lay with the PCB. "The World Twenty20 win had hid all the weaknesses in the team and the cricket board," he said. "Since this board has taken over we have lost the Champions Trophy (hosting rights), we have been stripped of World Cup 2011 matches and we have failed to handle the team, so this is total mismanagement, which is unacceptable.

"The coach (Intikhab Alam) must go, and the captain (Younis Khan) also lacks the qualities of a good leader."

Former chief selector Abdul Qadir was unhappy with the nature of the defeats. "They should feel ashamed," he said. "Defeats are part and parcel of the game, but shameful defeats are unacceptable."

Former wicketkeeper Rashid Latif, however, ruled out changes in management and said the fault lay with the players. "Changes are not the solution," Latif said. "I think the team needs to go back to basics and there should be no interference in team planning. The team must play to its own plan." Younis Khan has said the poor domestic structure was to blame.