DateLine: 18th May 2015
With thanks to www.PakPassion.net for the following interview.
Former Pakistan captain and a man known for his forthright views on Pakistan cricket, Javed Miandad spoke to PakPassion.net about the alleged influence of the International Cricket Council on Pakistan cricket, on how ex-cricketers can help improve Pakistan cricket with PCB's help, the hype surrounding the proposed India-Pakistan series and the treatment of Kevin Pietersen at the hands of the ECB.
PakPassion.net: Can you please explain the reason behind your recent remarks about ICCís unwelcome influence on Pakistan cricket?
All they keep on insisting is that Pakistan should have a democratic system in PCB without any regard for what that system is producing. We have had a system in place for forty years or so. We were producing world beating cricketers and teams. Now the ICC are more interested in systems of government but do they know that in Pakistan we buy and sell votes? How will the ICC account for that? All they have are just empty slogans which do not help us at all. They have now helped install a system of governance in the PCB which is untenable in Pakistani terms where a person can simply become a president based upon his influence and nothing else. ICC has no business interfering in internal matters of the PCB or other member boards.
The fact is that countries like England, Australia, and New Zealand have well established democratic traditions but clearly that is not the case in Pakistan. We have had a system that was working but now we have nothing. We have incapable people at the helm and the results are for all to see.
PakPassion.net: Do you not agree that the ICC is doing a reasonable job in running the game and surely Pakistanís own problems cannot be blamed on anyone else?
Now, with ICCís insistence, we have a system where the Chairman isnít worried about being ousted and neither do his cronies. No one can remove this person and he is answerable to no one. So what have we gained? If the ICC wants to do good then they should take over these boards and run cricket completely so that they understand the excesses that take place in the name of governance in Pakistan. Why not run the system in Pakistan and then understand what we face here! We all know that in our country only an iron hand can help bring order to the game. Notions of a soft approach have no place in our world. Pakistan cricket does not even have a playersí association but the ICC has no opinion on that! A players association is the best way to safeguard player rights but it does not exist in this country or is not allowed to be formed but the ICC ignores this. An organization such as that would have kept the PCB on its toes but it does not exist in Pakistan.
The PCB should have been run by former cricketers and not journalists or diplomats and the ICC should have insisted on this point, rather than empty slogans about democracy which have done nothing to improve the game in Pakistan. I even feel that the ICC should be guaranteeing the safety of players and encourage teams to go to Pakistan instead of just standing back and doing nothing as teams renege on their commitments. This is what the ICC should be doing.
PakPassion.net: Pakistanís recent form in ODIs is a matter of concern, what is the reason for this slump in form?
Look at the setup in Karachi. For a city of that size, you should have something close to a thousand clubs from which the cream of the crop can be chosen to move up into first class cricket and beyond. Instead of that we have zones where the number of clubs is limited to something like twenty five clubs. How can a large population ever have a chance of fairly competing for places in these clubs? No wonder you have nepotism and corruption to get people into a small number of clubs. Then you wonder why we are where we are in the ICC Rankings?
PakPassion.net: You paint a bleak picture for the future of Pakistan cricket but surely we have ex-cricketers like you who can step up and help?
PakPassion.net: Speaking of Waqar Younis, how tenable is his position after Pakistanís latest drop in the rankings?
The discipline issue, incidentally is caused when there is no direction or guidance for players. In my time as an Under 19 player, my parents were my mentors. They advised me on basic norms of behaviour down to even the way I was to hold a knife and fork when eating out! Some of these players have risen from a background where a hundred here or there gets them into the national team. They havenít earned their place in the team and that is the problem.
PakPassion.net: There is a lot of noise about the India-Pakistan series at the moment. Are you buying into this hype?
It is undoubtedly a big occasion whenever these teams meet but I am not sure about the motives and most of these series happen or not happen to please the public. My view is that India dislikes playing Pakistan in series because losing to Pakistan causes a lot of problems back home so letís see if this series will happen or not, despite the public assurances.
PakPassion.net: Do you feel that a player of the calibre of Kevin Pietersen has been unfairly dealt with by the ECB?
The fact is that ECB have no issues with his cricketing skills. The problems are elsewhere and if the ECB have made up their mind to not select him over non-cricketing issues then they should say and let him go earn his living doing something else. He is playing county cricket and is therefore eligible to play for his country so he needs to be told clearly that they will not select him regardless of how well he does in domestic cricket. I would say this criteria for selection should be applied to all players worldwide. If they are playing and performing well then no other consideration needs to be taken for selection.
(Article: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author only.
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