LAHORE: In a highly surprising development on Thursday, Mohsin Khan, the head of Pakistan Cricket Board’s cricket committee, resigned from the position -- only a few days after the struggling national team lost to arch-rivals India at the ongoing ICC World Cup.

Interestingly, ex-Test opener Mohsin was swiftly replaced with newly-appointed managing director Wasim Khan. Wasim faces the gigantic task of reviewing the national team’s dismal performance in the World Cup and make recommendations for the future.

The formation of the cricket committee was the first prominent cricketing decision made by Ehsan Mani after he was elected unopposed as the PCB chief in September last year.

Mohsin, 64, was named the head of a high-profile cricket committee in October. However, since its formation the committee could meet only for a couple of times as the critics has termed it as ineffective one.

Fast bowling legend Wasim Akram, ex-Test skipper Misbah-ul-Haq and former captain of national women’s team Urooj Mumtaz are the prominent members of the committee while three PCB officials all of whom are former Test cricketers -- Mudassar Nazar, Haroon Rasheed and Zakir Khan -- are its ex-officio members.

On Thursday, Mohsin left the post just one day after the PCB Board of Governors assigned him the task of reviewing the national team’s show in the World Cup.

More interestingly, the words of Mohsin mentioned in the PCB press release issued on Thursday about him leaving the position sound meaningful, hinting the former opener maybe interested in some other role at the Board.

“Former Test cricketer and chair of the PCB cricket committee, Mohsin Khan, during a recent meeting with PCB chairman Ehsan Mani expressed his willingness to be released from his current position, which was accepted by the PCB chairman. Mohsin said: ‘I am very thankful to PCB chairman Ehsan Mani for honouring me with the opportunity to chair the PCB cricket committee. My services are always available for Pakistan cricket at a suitable position in view of my past record’,” read the PCB press release.

Mani in the release said, “It is always difficult to let go someone of Mohsin’s stature and calibre, but we respect his decision. I am thankful to Mohsin for his contributions and wish him well in his future endeavours.”

The press release further said, “PCB managing director Wasim Khan will now act as chair of the PCB cricket committee which, at the end of the ICC World Cup, will carry out a robust review of the Pakistan team’s performance over the past three years before submitting its recommendations to the PCB chairman and the BoG for their consideration.”

Interestingly, Mohsin for the last eight months had been working as the head of the cricket committee a position which he now believes is not suitable for him.

Sources, however, told Dawn that as many key posts are expected to be vacated after the ongoing World Cup, particularly in case Pakistan fail to qualify for the semi-finals, Mohsin would not have got a post like coach or chief selector due to his role as the head of the cricket committee. Therefore, he quit as the cricket committee head.

It is pertinent to mention here that though the cricket committee comprised several prominent figures of Pakistan cricket, it is a mere recommendation body which has no powers.

Furthermore, sources added, some members of the cricket committee were not willing to work under Mohsin because of his strict attitude so his decision to quit the post maybe a blessing in disguise for them.

When the said committee in the past attempted to summon head coach Mickey Arthur and chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq to brief the committee on the string of defeats suffered by national team in international contests, including the Asia Cup (hosted by the UAE in September 2018), both of them did not turn up. And when the PCB did not react to the indifference shown by Arthur and Inzamam towards the cricket committee, it very much exposed the tiny status of the committee.

Published in Dawn, June 21st, 2019

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