Former Pakistan cricket team captain, Mohammad Hafeez, spoke openly about the team’s performance in the Asia Cup, emphasizing the importance of acknowledging failure as a stepping stone towards improvement.
Call for Responsibility: Hafeez urged the experienced players on the team to take responsibility for their performance, highlighting the need for accountability among the squad members.
Questioning Coaching Allegations: He questioned the timing of allegations regarding the honesty of Pakistani coaches, specifically mentioning Najam Sethi’s previous endorsement of Mickey Arthur.
Mental Impact of India Defeat: Hafeez acknowledged that the defeat against India had a significant mental impact on the Pakistani team, emphasizing the need for the players to bounce back from such setbacks.
Support for Babar Azam: He stressed the importance of supporting Babar Azam as captain for the upcoming World Cup and urged fans to have faith in the team’s potential.
Disappointing Spin Performance: Hafeez expressed disappointment in the performance of the spinners, particularly Shadab Khan, attributing it to the influence of T20 cricket. He suggested the need for a spin consultant to enhance spin bowling capabilities.
Consistency in Management: As a cricket committee member, Hafeez advocated for continuity in the team’s management, suggesting that frequent changes may not be the solution to the team’s issues. He recommended only replacing players due to injuries.
Injuries and League Participation: Hafeez raised concerns about players getting injured due to their participation in various cricket leagues before major tournaments like the Asia Cup. He urged the management to consider players’ fitness when scheduling such tournaments.
Bench Strength and Decision-Making: He questioned the management’s decision not to test the bench strength against teams like Netherlands and Afghanistan. Hafeez believes that such opportunities could have been beneficial in building depth in the squad.
Strict Measures Against Fixing: Mohammad Hafeez called for strict measures against match-fixing, suggesting that taking decisive action against wrongdoers could deter future misconduct. He referenced Ehsan Mani’s desire to change PCB laws to prevent fixers from rejoining the team, a proposal that has not accepted by the PCB cabinet.