Former Australia opener Matthew Hayden and former South Africa seamer Vernon Philander have been added to the Pakistan team's coaching staff for the upcoming T20 World Cup in the UAE. The new PCB chairman, Ramiz Raja, announced the appointments on Monday, citing the aggression and quality of the players as defining reasons for their hiring.
The two former cricketers came as unexpected appointments, and it was not immediately clear what specific roles they would play. Ramiz also said there would be a head coach appointed alongside them, but did not reveal a name.
"Matthew Hayden is Australian, and has experience of winning World Cups and was a great player himself," Ramiz said. "It might be very beneficial to have an Australian occupying the dressing room. And Pakistan, of course, can win the World Cup, they just need to improve their performances an extra 10%. Vernon Philander I know very well, and he understands bowling, and has a great record against Australia."
Hayden and Philander have exceptional credentials as cricketers, but neither has any substantive coaching experience. Philander only retired from international cricket in 2020, and was due to take part in the South African domestic season which begins on September 24 this year. Hayden retired in 2009, and has taken on occasional media work, but his assignment with Pakistan at the World Cup is his first major coaching assignment.
Philander linking up with Pakistan ahead of the World Cup is complicated a little, though, by his contract with the Western Province domestic side in South Africa, who he was signed to play for this season. An official at Western Province confirmed to ESPNcricinfo Philander's contract had been running since May, with the side having paid him since then. WP are expected to issue a statement on the matter in due course. The PCB, however, told ESPNcricinfo WP have given Philander permission to join Pakistan until the end of the T20 World Cup.
Misbah-ul-Haq and Waqar Younis stepped down as head coach and bowling coach of the Pakistan team last week. They were replaced by Saqlain Mushtaq and Abdul Razzaq on an interim basis for Pakistan's home series against New Zealand, which starts later this week. ESPNcricinfo understands that Saqlain is likely to continue as head coach through to the World Cup, and would in that case share coaching duties with Hayden and Philander.