The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced the appointment of Haroon Rasheed as the Director of Cricket Operations on Monday. Rasheed, according to reports, will be taking up the charge of his new role on immediate basis. Rasheed had worked in the past as Chief Selector of Pakistan. Just a year ago, Rasheed was criticised by the then outgoing Pakistan coach Waqar Younis in a scathing report he presented after Pakistan’s horrendous show in the 2016 ICC World T20. Pakistan had failed to even go past the first round in the tournament held in India. Waqar had blamed Rasheed for making frequent changes to the side which did not work out well.
“Haroon Rasheed was made Chief Selector after the World Cup and since then there have been so many changes on every tour, at times I feel they were stop-gap decisions, but to develop a team, you need to believe in your decisions and give them time,” Waqar had written in his report after Pakistan’s embarrassing exit.
Rasheed had recently backed Mickey Arthur, head coach of Pakistan, in his views that the country’s cricket is yet to embrace the changes witnessed recently. “Mickey Arthur has been saying that he wants Pakistan to play modern cricket,” Rasheed was quoted as saying by The Express Tribune.
Rasheed explained that tournaments such as Pakistan Cup (50-over domestic competition) will benefit young players: “These tournaments allow all players to perform in home conditions and gain confidence by improving their strike rates, which will eventually help us at the national level. You have the example of Kamran Akmal and Ahmad Shahzad who performed in the domestic circuit and made their way back into the national squad.
“Selectors must have made a time table to visit the stadium during the tournament. The first thing that they need to do is identify power-hitters. The national team needs players who can clear the field with ease. The quality of cricket has improved since T20 format gained popularity. Players can now play with strike rates of over 100 in every format. Thus, the need of the hour is to identify batsmen who can do that for Pakistan. We’ll need such players in the coming years.”