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Fitness & Fielding: Pakistan’s new Test coach Jason Gillespie on biggest areas of improvement

Fitness & Fielding: Pakistan’s new Test coach Jason Gillespie on biggest areas of improvement

Pakistan last won a home Test series in February 2021 and lost 3-0 to Australia in the 3-match series they played in December-January.

Jason Gillespie, the Pakistan cricket team’s new Test head coach, has officially joined the team. The former Australian fast bowler was announced as the man-in-charge of their red-ball setup in April but hadn’t joined the team as they were playing white-ball cricket until the T20 World Cup ended on June 29.

Earlier today, Gillespie reached Karachi for a pre-season camp. His first assignment will start in August, when Bangladesh will tour Pakistan for a 2-match Test series. On his arrival, the Aussie quick addressed the media and talked about the main focus points for the Shan Masood-led side.

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Fitness my main priority: Jason Gillespie

Having been part of an Australian team that was considered to be one of the best fielding sides of all time and played 189 first-class matches (71 Tests), the pacer knows what it takes to perform at the highest level.

“In international cricket, you have to remain fit; there are no questions on that. Everyone should know about the importance of fitness. It is the main component of a sportsman. There is a general opinion that Pakistan’s fielding is their weak point, so that would be my priority. For me, the goal is to see how we play against quality sides,” Gillespie said to the press in Karachi.

Gillespie on talent, selection & workload management

The experienced coach talked about the abundance of talent in Pakistan and highlighted how the aim is to utilize it and make the players more consistent. He added that he wants Pakistan to play positive (attacking) cricket and would select players based on opposition and conditions.

“The Pakistan cricket team is very talented but the lack of consistency in performances is the main problem, we will see how we can bring continuity and consistency in performances.”

“I have talked to Shan Masood (Pakistan’s Test captain) one to two times, I’m hoping we will play positive cricket. I will discuss with the players about what brand of cricket they want to play, the team will be selected while taking the opposition and conditions in mind.”

“If a player is good for the team, he will definitely be selected. I’m in contact with Gary Kirsten [Pakistan’s white-ball coach] for players’ workload management.”

“My focus is red-ball cricket, I will also travel to Australia with Shaheens (Pakistan A side) and watch their players. I have talked with Jeff Lawson and Shaun Tait (Pakistan’s former bowling coach) on the Pakistan cricket team.”

Latest on Pakistan Cricket

Pakistan Test match schedule 2024-25 season

SeriesMatchesDatesLocation
Pakistan vs Bangladesh2August 21 to September 3Home
Pakistan vs England3October 7 to 28Home
South Africa vs Pakistan2December 26 to January 7Away
Pakistan vs West Indies2Yet to announcedHome
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