Cricket: Yousuf appointed batting coach for High Performance Centre in Lahore

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Thursday appointed former skipper Mohammad Yousuf as the batting coach of its National High Performance Centre (NHPC) in Lahore.

Yousuf, who has scored 7,530 Test and 9,720 ODI runs in a career spanning from 1998 to 2010, will head the list of coaches, which already boasts of Mushtaq Ahmed as the spin bowling consultant.

“My ambitions in making a career in coaching is an open secret but it was all about the timing and a proper roadmap for our future cricket in which I could contribute effectively,” Yousuf said in a statement issued by the PCB.

“I believe this is the right time for me to start my second innings as I can sense the intent and optimism in the approach.

“I am delighted to have been offered this opportunity and I firmly believe I can help young cricketers by transferring my knowledge and experience, which I have acquired after being part of one of the brightest and formidable eras of Pakistan cricket,” he added.

Joining Yousuf at the NHPC is former wicketkeeper Atiq-uz-Zaman and tear away fast bowler Mohammad Zahid.

Atiq has played a Test, three ODIs and 69 first-class matches, while Zahid has featured in five Tests, 11 ODIs and 43 first-class matches before a back injury cut short his promising career.

PCB has also confirmed 36 coaches for the six Cricket Associations, which will feature in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, National T20 Cup, Pakistan Cup One-Day Tournament and the National U19 cricket tournament for the 2020-21 domestic season.

The performance review and recruitment process was carried out by Grant Bradburn (Head of High Performance Coaching), Saqlain Mushtaq (Head of International Player Development) and Shahid Aslam (National Men’s Team Assistant).

“It has been a rigorous 360-degree review and recruitment process, and in the end, I am happy that we have been able to attract some of the very best ex-international and domestic performers strictly on merit of their coaching ability,” said Mushtaq.

“A number of newly-appointed coaches are known for playing an aggressive brand of positive cricket, and I hope they will induce the same spirit in their sides as we remain committed to closing the gap between our domestic cricket and international cricket,” he added.

International stars added to the coaching panel include Abdul Razzaq (46 Tests, 265 ODIs and 32 T20Is), Aizaz Cheema (seven Tests 14 ODIs and five T20Is), Basit Ali (19 Tests and 50 ODIs), Faisal Iqbal (26 Tests, 18 ODIs), Ghulam Ali (three ODIs and 167 first-class matches), Humayun Farhat (one Test and five ODIs), Irfan Fazil (one Test, one ODI) and Zafar Iqbal (eight ODIs).

Besides these international cricketers, seven other former first-class cricketers will make their coaching debuts in the upcoming domestic season. They are: Aftab Khan, Aslam Qureshi, Fahad Masood, Habib Baloch, Hafiz Majid Jahangir, Hanif Malik, and Mohammad Sadiq.

The coaches, who have been retained for the 2020-21 season, are: Abdul Rehman, Akram Raza, Bilal Ahmed, Fahad Akram, Hussain Khosa, Iqbal Imam, Kamran Khan, Mazhar Dinari, Mohammad Masroor, Mohammad Wasim, Rafatullah Mohmand, Saeed Anwar Junior, Sajjad Akbar, Samiullah Niazi, Saqib Faqir, Shahid Anwar, Shoaib Khan, Tahir Mahmood, Tanvir Shaukat, Wasim Haider and Zahoor Elahi.

Following changes of first XI head coaches, there has been a reshuffle in the men’s national selection committee.

Razzaq, Basit, Faisal and Shahid Anwar will now join Abdur Rehman and Mohammad Wasim in head coach and chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq’s men’s national selection panel.