LAHORE: Mohammad Wasim has been appointed as the Chairman of the Pakistan men’s national selection committee, whereas Saleem Yousuf has been confirmed as the Chair of the National Cricket Committee by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) in a press release issued here on Saturday. Both have been appointed till the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023.

“The appointments were approved by the PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani following the final round of online interviews, which were held on Thursday and Friday,” the press release said.

The PCB has allowed Wasim, the head coach of Northern, to join the post of chief selector following the conclusion of the ongoing Quaid-i-Azam Trophy.

“Mohammad Wasim’s first assignment will be to select the Pakistan side for the two Tests and three T20Is series against South Africa around mid-January, while the PCB Cricket Committee’s first meeting of 2021 will be held in Karachi in the lead up to the first Test, which will start at the National Stadium from January 26,” the PCB said.“There is no change to the composition of the selection committee and head coaches of the six first XI Cricket Association sides will continue to serve on the panel. As and when Wasim’s replacement as the Northern Cricket Association head coach has been confirmed, he will join the selection committee as the sixth member.

“Saleem Yousuf last served the PCB as a member of the national selection committee from 2013-2015. The former wicketkeeper-batsman will head the panel that presently includes Ali Naqvi (match officials’ representative), Umar Gul (current cricketers’ representative), Urooj Mumtaz (women cricketers’ representative), and Wasim Akram (former cricketers’ representative).

The PCB Cricket Committee’s remit is to advise the PCB chairman on cricket-related matters, including but not limited to the performances of the national cricket teams and their management, domestic cricket structure, high-performance centres and playing conditions.

The Committee has the powers to invite relevant personnel for its quarterly meetings to assist as part of its evaluation, assessment and recommendation process.

PCB Chief Executive Wasim Khan: “We are delighted to confirm the appointments of two high-quality individuals as Chair of the Selection and PCB Cricket Committees. Both will serve for an initial three-year period till the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023.

“Wasim’s appointment is also part of our strategy to groom, develop and provide leadership opportunities to our talented cricketers. After retiring from competitive cricket, Wasim has progressed through the ranks, having previously worked as a match referee, coach and selector.

“Under Saleem’s leadership, we will have a fresh, objective and constructive approach to all aspects of our game and the PCB Cricket Committee looks forward to putting up strong recommendations to the PCB Chairman on how we can continue to improve Pakistan cricket.”

Mohammad Wasim said: “I have been very fortunate to have played with some of the finest cricketers and am confident that I will be able to execute those learnings in this challenging role.

“We have a busy 2021 year ahead and I will focus on being positive on selections that not only address our short-term needs but also fulfil our long-term ambitions. We have immense talent in Pakistan and it is important that they are given opportunities.

“This is a performance-oriented world and, as such, my philosophy will be to promote meritocracy and select squads according to home and international conditions and requirements. As a chief selector, I will always be willing to make the hard calls, if these are in the best interest of Pakistan cricket.

“I look forward to working closely with head coach Misbah-ul-Haq and captain Babar Azam as we collectively strive to take Pakistan cricket forward.”

Meanwhile Saleem Yousuf said: “It is an honour to chair the group, which boasts some highly respected and knowledgeable people.

“The objective of this panel is to evaluate, analyse and assess cricket-related matters and then make recommendations to the PCB Chairman on how Pakistan cricket can improve, strengthen and move forward.”

Published in Dawn, December 20th, 2020

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