Former Pakistan batter slams PCB for Last Minute appointment of Gary Kirsten for T20 World Cup 2024

The former wicket-keeper batter discussed the PCB should have given the new captain and the coaches at least 6 to 7 months to work closely with the players.

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Former wicket-keeper batter Rashid Latif has mocked Pakistan cricket team’s poor tradition of inconsistency ahead of an ICC tournament. The Pakistan cricket board has recently announced the team’s 18 Man squad for the upcoming tour of Ireland (10-14 May) and England (22-30 May) ahead of the upcoming global tournament, the T20 World Cup 2024. 

A few weeks ahead of the tournament, the PCB has appointed the 2011 ODI World Cup Winning India’s Head Coach Gary Kirsten as Pakistan’s coach for the T20 World Cup 2024. Pakistan will be eyeing a redemption for their loss in the previous edition’s final against England. 

The Pakistan team recently underwent a major transition after the PCB sacked their T20 captain and ace pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi and replaced him with their former captain Babar Azam, who previously stepped down from the captaincy after a failed campaign in the ODI World Cup 2023 in India. 

Rashid Latif Slams PCB For Poor Timing of Appointing New Leaders for T20 World Cup 2024 

Rashid Latif criticised the board’s timing of appointing a new captain and new coaches, Gary Kirsten and Jason Gillespie a few weeks before the commencement of the world tournament. Latif highlighted that if Pakistan fails to provide the desired results, the PCB will blame Babar and the coaches instead of admitting the problem of their timing. 

“Gary Kirsten has been a successful coach for India, and also in franchise cricket. But timing (of his appointment) is wrong, the problem that has always arisen in Pakistan is timing. This is above my head... Next month we are going to the World Cup. On the road to the World Cup, we are playing 7 matches. The time is very short. If they lose, the board will blame Kirsten or Babar Azam. This is our tradition. I will not blame Babar or Kirsten”, Latif said. 

The wicket-keeper batter discussed that Pakistan is not a team to be written off in marquee tournaments and have consistently performed, however, the PCB should have given the new captain and the coaches at least 6 to 7 months to work closely with the players. 

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“Pakistan definitely has an advantage that you cannot neglect them in ICC events, you cannot write them off. They appear from nowhere... This has happened on many occasions. Kirsten and Gillespie are both very experienced coaches and have impressive records. But they should have been called earlier. Today, if I know that this is my head coach, this is my captain and this is my selection committee... Momentum is like what happens in Australia, India, England that they know these are our 12-13 certain players and this is my coach. You should have known all this 6-8 months or even a year in advance,” Rashid added. 

The PCB will reduce their 18 Man squad and call back three players after analyzing the performances of the first T20I match in Leeds on May 22 to meet ICC’s May 24 deadline for the squad announcement of the marquee tournament.