‘Misbah being groomed by PCB officials to handle media’

Updated January 22, 2020

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Head coach Misbahul Haq's inability to handle the media was raised by a member of PCB Board of Governors. — AFP/File
Head coach Misbahul Haq's inability to handle the media was raised by a member of PCB Board of Governors. — AFP/File

LAHORE: Head coach-cum-chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq has been advised to learn the art and techniques of handling the press and two key officials of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) are working with him to groom the former captain in the said area, it was learnt on Tuesday.

According to the latest documents of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), the point about Misbah’s inability to handle the media was raised by one of the members of the Board of Governors in the last meeting of the BoG.

Interestingly, when a top official of the PCB was informing the members of the BoG about Misbah’s abilities to take Pakistan cricket forward and his ideas and plans for domestic cricket, a BoG member pointed out that there was a need to train Misbah in the art of handling the press. To that, the PCB high official took a U-turn and said that the PCB has made similar observations and he himself along with another top Board official in the media department were already working on the issue.

However, it must be mentioned here that though Misbah has faced flak from the critics over his selection and coaching, it is to his credit that Misbah has dealt very calmly and quite well with the media, even in the face of some harsh questions.

But it is, indeed, quite puzzling that when the same management of the PCB, which has shown tremendous confidence and trust in Misbah by giving him absolute powers in selection and coaching, admitted to the ex-skipper’s handicap in handling the media instead of defending him in front of the BoG.

Misbah’s tenure so far in his newly-acquired roles has been much below par as Pakistan lost the T20 series against a young Sri Lanka at home last year in November followed by the successive losses in the T20s and the Test in Australia as well.

Now the upcoming home series against Bangladesh, starting with three T20 matches series in Lahore from Jan 24, is the third assignment for Misbah.

So far as chief selector, he has not shown much wisdom and has taken many controversial decisions, mainly of recalling opener Ahmed Shehzad and middle-order batsman Umar Akmal against Sri Lanka who failed to click, and now recalling all-rounders Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Hafeez for the Bangladesh T20s.

However, on both the occasions, Misbah faced some hard questions from the media but kept his composure quite well.

Published in Dawn, January 22nd, 2020