The PCB on Wednesday denied speculated rift between some players and coach Mickey Arthur, a day after a Pakistani news channel claimed that chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq was sent to England to act as a peacemaker between the two ‘warring parties’.
The news channel also claimed that some players have lodged a complaint with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) about the behaviour of Arthur and made it clear they were not going to accept the coach’s domination.
It further claimed that some players are not even on talking terms with the coach.
The Board, however, has strongly denied the claims, saying Inzamam’s departure for England was delayed due to office procedures but it had been decided beforehand that he would travel to the UK and be involved in the selection process.
Interestingly, in Pakistan cricket, the norm has been that the selection committee picks up the touring squad and then a tour selection committee, including the captain, coach and at times the manager, finalises the playing XI before every match.
Therefore, Inzamam’s presence in England and his involvement in finalising the playing XI and getting involved in other team matters, has raised eyebrows.
In fact, many former players have criticised Inzamam’s interference in team affairs and termed it as an attempt to override the captain and coach.
A board official, speaking on condition of anonymity, expressed frustration at the many stories circulating in the Pakistan media since the team lost to Australia and India.
“It is sad because our team needs all the support it can get right now. That is why the board Chairman called up captain Sarfaraz (Ahmed) and encouraged him. Every time we do badly, such stories and speculations come out. When Pakistan won against England, there was no mention of rifts and problems and it has now started,” said the official.
But now Inzamam is no longer travelling with the team as his assignment ended after Pakistan’s match against India.