Ex-fast bowler Waqar Younis picked as Pakistan’s national team coach

Fitzgerald Cecilio – 4E Sports Reporter

Lahore, Pakistan (4E Sports) – Former Pakistan fast bowler Waqar Younis has been selected as coach of the national team for two years.

Younis said he will join the team in June. He previously served as bowling coach of the Pakistan side in 2006-07 and briefly in 2009, and as head coach in 2010-11.

“I am extremely pleased to have been selected as the head coach,” Waqar said. “My immediate aim would be to prepare the team for the upcoming busy cricket season including the next year’s ICC Cricket World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.”

After a meeting in Lahore, a committee comprising Intikhab Alam (director domestic cricket operations), Haroon Rashid (director game development) and Moin Khan (chief selector) unanimously recommended Waqar, a choice that was endorsed by the PCB chairman.

After Dav Whatmore’s contract with Pakistan ended in February, Khan was named coach and was in charge until the World Twenty20 in April.

After that, the PCB administration under Najam Sethi gave him the dual roles of team manager and chief selector of the national team.

Waqar had previously quit as Pakistan coach reportedly because of personal reasons, but his differences with former captain Shahid Afridi were a factor during Ijaz Butt’s term as PCB chairman.

“Pakistan cricket is like my family and differences aren’t the end of life, so things get better. I am here to serve cricket and want to return what I have learned from my playing career,” Waqar said when asked if he was okay with working with Afridi.

During Waqar’s previous stint as Pakistan coach between March 2010 and August 2011, Pakistan endured several off-field controversies – the spot-fixing scandal in England and Zulqarnain Haider fleeing to the UK mid-way through a tour.

They drew a Test series against South Africa, won one in New Zealand and reached the semi-finals of the 2011 World Cup. After his term came to an end, Waqar applied for the Australia job but did not make it past an interview with Cricket Australia.

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