Miandad willing to help Lawson

Despite criticising his appointment, Javed Miandad says he is willing to work with Pakistan's new coach Geoff Lawson. Miandad, along with Intikhhab Alam, was among the first to slam Lawson's appointment, claiming that not only was he a foreigner, and thus "less patriotic", but also that, on merit, Dav Whatmore was the better option.

Lawson, placed in charge of Pakistan for two years initially, responded with a peace offering of sorts. He told The Australian that he wanted to bring his critics on board and use their inputs as well. Miandad, against whom he played eight Tests between 1982 and 1984, was the ideal personality to use, said Lawson.

"I'd like to get Javed on board to be part of the coaching crew, to be part of the system and help out, because he was an outstanding player and a tough bloke as well," Lawson said. "We could do with a few of those characteristics among the guys at the moment. I'm hoping to talk to all those people and see what contributions they can make. We can't control outside influences but it would be good if we could have some of those outside influences being positive."

Miandad has now welcomed the offer, though was unwilling to firm up the sentiment. "I was and am always available whenever Pakistan cricket would need me," Miandad told The News.

But when asked whether he would consider the possiblity of working as a specialist batting coach, Miandad said, "It is premature to say anything on it. There is no such offer at the moment so I would only think about it if there is any possibility in the future."

Miandad, arguably Pakistan's greatest batsman, described Lawson's gesture as "a slap in the faces of those {PCB} officials" who have overlooked his credentials in recent years. Miandad has coached Pakistan on three occasions and in his last stint he was eventually replaced by Bob Woolmer in June 2004. Famously, the two had a private dinner soon after Woolmer took over but relations between the two continued to cool thereafter, leading Miandad to hope that "it will be different with Lawson."