Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has restricted national team head coach Misbah-ul-Haq's authority in selecting the playing eleven, Jang reported today. There are also other things in life which are important. Misbah and bowling coach Waqar Younis were given a reprieve on account of injuries and problems caused by the pandemic. Pakistan suffered heavy defeats in both the Tests. Before that, the Pakistani players were in a bio-bubble in England, as well as at home during the final leg of the PSL, the Zimbabwe series, the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy and the National T20s.
The board has scheduled another Cricket Committee meeting following South Africa series, giving the coaching staff a lifeline.
Former skipper Misbah, 46, was appointed as head coach and chief selector for three years in 2019 but he stepped down as chief selector amid mounting criticism prior to the series in New Zealand while continued with the role of head coach. Each player has to clear a Covid-19 test before joining the team.
"While it is disappointing that the end results are not in Pakistan's favour in our last three away series [in Australia during November 2019, England and New Zealand] but there are many positives and second the Covid-19 restrictions have their own impact on the performances", the head coach. "The challenges of playing in Covid-19 protocols have not only been faced by the Pakistan men's national team, but by all the sides presently involved in global cricket and these concerns have been regularly raised by the team coaches and elite cricketers".
"In New Zealand, we start training three days after the arrival but [this time] due to the positive Covid-19 test of some Pakistan players the isolation period spread over 18 days", the coach continued.
"All professional and high-performing athletes require an environment where they can prepare their best for the global stage, which was not the case for the last two tours and most definitely not at the last tour where players had been confined to their rooms for two weeks due to the policies of that particular Covid-free country", said Yousaf.
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"The PCB has been conveyed by its patron in chief, prime minister, Imran Khan that the performance of the team is not satisfactory and no visible improvement has been seen in the team in the past year or so", a well-informed source said. He will consult the six selectors, head coach Misbah and Babar before naming it.
Batting coach Younis Khan has not been invited for the meeting.
Misbah is also expected to address a press conference on Monday in Lahore as the Pakistan team players and officials have started returning from New Zealand.
Misbah brought up the limitations and constraints in the last seven months as a justification for some of the below-par performances, specifically prior to the tour of New Zealand, where Pakistan spent nearly three weeks in quarantine in New Zealand.
On the forthcoming home series against South Africa, Misbah said there would a plan in place for the series which, he hoped, would increase the players' confidence level to give improved performance. "The greatest fast bowler in the history of cricket is working under Misbah".
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