Inzamam blasts PCB for dividing Pak team into Afridi and Misbah camps

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

LAHORE - Former Pakistan cricket captain Inzamamul Haq has slammed the Pakistan Cricket Board for creating factions within the national side by delaying the naming of a captain for next month’s World Cup.

Inzamam, who played 120 Test matches for Pakistan scoring 25 centuries, said the delay had disrupted the team’s preparations for the showpiece event and stoked divisions among the squad.

“With only three weeks left to the World Cup, Pakistan have no captain and the blame goes to the PCB for creating an impasse which has divided the team into two groups, supporting [Shahid] Afridi and Misbah [ul Haq] ,” the Daily Times quoted Inzamam, as saying in an interview.

“In this scenario one cannot have high expectations for the team,” he added.

The former captain was of the view that not knowing the captain for the forthcoming World Cup would be “very damaging” for the Pakistan ODI squad.

“When a team is without a captain how can a proper strategy be made? The team is playing a one-day series in New Zealand but they do not know who will be their captain in the World Cup, which is very damaging,” said Inzamam, who was part of the World Cup-winning Pakistan squad in 1992.

Pakistan is the only team out of 14 competing nations to have failed to name a captain for the tournament, which starts from February 19 to April 2.

“I am surprised, why does it always happen to Pakistan?” questioned Inzamam.

Inzamam also accused the PCB of selecting the final 15-member World Cup squad without consulting incumbent one-day captain Shahid Afridi or coach Waqar Younis, and said players would be made scapegoats if Pakistan failed to perform in the mega event.

“The PCB has failed to control the situation, and if Pakistan fares badly in the World Cup, people will accuse the players and not the board,” he rued.

“So if the team loses, the captain and coach will say that it was not their team and was selected without their consent. And they will rightly not accept responsibility for a poor showing,” he said.

Pakistan start their World Cup campaign with a match against Kenya at the Sri Lankan resort of Hambantota on February 23. (ANI)

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