Misbah ul Haq has been appointed the head coach and chairman of selectors of Pakistan, the PCB announced on Wednesday (September 4). Misbah will have Waqar Younis as the bowling coach with both veterans serving for a three-year cycle.
Both Misbah and Younis were picked by a five-member panel that included Intikhab Alam (former captain), Bazid Khan (former cricket), Asad Ali Khan (Member of the Board of Governors), Wasim Khan (Chief Executive, PCB) and Zakir Khan (Director – International Cricket).
“It is very humbling for me to join a select group of some of the very best to have coached the Pakistan national sides in the past. It is an honour and more than that, a massive responsibility as we live and breathe cricket,” Misbah said.
“I know expectations are high, but I am absolutely ready and up for the task, otherwise I would not have thrown my name in the hat for one of the most challenging and coveted roles in Pakistan cricket.”
Misbah acknowledged one of the agendas of his coaching tenure will be a change in the team culture. “We have some of the most talented and exciting cricketers, and I will like to help them train and prepare in such a way that they can play intelligently, smartly and fearlessly. I am aware this will require a change in the dressing room culture but if we have to compete consistently at the highest level, we have to embrace these modern-day requirements,” he pointed out.
“We need to understand this is a performance-oriented world and only those Pakistan players have thrived in the past who have taken the pride in donning the star and crest on their chests by delivering every time they have stepped on to the field. That’s the way I have played my cricket all through my career and this will not change in my new role.
“I am excited to once again have someone as experienced and knowledgeable as Waqar Younis in my corner as a bowling coach. We have exciting young fast bowlers in our ranks and there is no better person than Waqar to transform them into modern-day stars. Both Waqar and I had a candid and frank discussion and we discussed and agreed on a number of things, including roles and responsibilities as well as how to take things forward.”
Waqar had previously worked as the Pakistan bowling coach and the head coach. In 2006, he was first appointed as the bowling coach and continued till 2007 before stepping down. He was the head coach of the side during the T20 World Cup in 2016 and faced severe criticism after Pakistan failed to make it to the semifinals in India. Apart from that, he has served in a coaching capacity in 2009-10 and 2010-11 as well.
Misbah, before the appointment, was part of the Pakistan Cricket Committee that suggested to the board to not renew the contract of Mickey Arthur and the other support staff after Pakistan’s group exit in the 2019 World Cup. He then resigned from his role and applied for the position of the head coach.
The first assignment for the duo will be the home series against Sri Lanka where the two sides will play three ODIs and three T20Is.