Rise of the Phoenix – Team Misbah
It is not too long ago, when Pakistan cricket team was surrounded with match-fixing controversies and its reputation was totally tarnished. It was Pakistan’s 2010 tour of England when the team hits it rock bottom. During that time the stewardship of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) was in the hand of a chairman Ijaz Butt, who was more interested in enjoying foreign tours than paying any attention to country’s eroding cricket infrastructure and declining team performance. Circumstances have not changed much since then, but team has certainly moved on building itself. The team is now acting like a one cohesive unit focused on tearing down the opponents than each other. It is a matter of fact that if Pakistan had not faced the match-fixing scandal back in England tour of 2010, the new talents like Saeed Ajmal and Abdur Rehman would’ve never made the squad.
The new chairman will be all smiling, conveniently grabbing all the credit for this historical triumph over England. But in reality, he has nothing to do with the Pakistan outstanding performance. The domestic cricket structure is still in rein and need an immediate overhaul. The Board itself is still a one-man show and currently headed by turpitude Zaka Ashraf; who like his preceder has no qualification or competence related to cricket other than being a close friend of President Asif Ali Zardari.
PCB has nothing to do with the Pakistan recent outstanding performance against England. Pakistan domestic cricket structure is still in rein and need an immediate overhaul. All praise is on team led by Misbah-ul-Haq who has work hard to become a one strong unit capable of shredding the world no.1 Test side. But this success is not a result of some well-built process, grooming or team building. If the match-fixing scandal had not happened, the team would have continued with the same squad & chairman; and would have headed towards another disaster. Now, there is an opportunity for PCB to build a strong team that can go on to become not only a strong Test side but also perform well in other formats of the game.
The Board must operate under its constitution and key post, including the chairman, should be advertised so that professional people with required skills and competences should be hired who are not merely the cronies of the President of Pakistan or some incompetent former cricket players. Most importantly, the position of chairman should be hold by a person who not only understand the game but also knows the in and out of running an entity like a big profit making corporate joint. The Australian and English cricket boards are managed like big corporate entities that keep pace with the challenges of time.
It is time to take Pakistan cricket on some solid footing. Talent will never be able shine unless it is processed through a proper domestic structure that not only groom them professionally but also educate them to learn ethical principles as well.
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