PERTH, Apr 23 (INP) Imran Khan, Legendary all rounder accuses PCB of nepotism and bemoans state of game in his home country, a report in Cricket Australia said Thursday.
World Cup winning captain Imran Khan blamed “nepotism” at board level and the poor structure of domestic cricket for Pakistan’s slide to No.8 in the world ODI rankings. And he says they need to learn from Australian cricket if they want to return to their former glories.
Pakistan suffered a comprehensive 3-0 series loss to Bangladesh this week, capped off by an eight-wicket thrashing in Dhaka on Wednesday.
The loss condemned Pakistan to No.8 in the rankings and meant they have now lost five consecutive bilateral ODI series, their last win coming against Sri Lanka in 2013.
Having not lost to the Tigers in any form of the game for 15 years, the Waqar Younis-coached side now must regroup ahead of a T20 international in Dhaka on Friday and the two-match Test series to follow.
Imran, the legendary allrounder turned politician who led Pakistan to the 1992 World Cup title, was drawn on the state of the national team during an interview with a private TV channel.
He said the cricket-mad nation of 182 million people had always been able to produce talented players, but the problem lay in a failure to properly nurture their ability.
“Pakistan’s cricket will not improve as long as there are people in the cricket board who have come through nepotism and without any merit. Sadly the people in our cricket board don’t have any knowledge of cricket,” the 62-year-old said.
“I never thought Pakistan would lose to Bangladesh 3-0 and drop to number eight in the ODI Rankings.
“Based on my 21-year experience of playing cricket I know that no country in the world has cricketing talent as good as Pakistan.
“I am not saying it because I belong to this country. Even players like Sir Viv Richards used to say same thing about Pakistan.
“Although we still have good bowlers in Wahab Riaz and Mohammad Irfan, we are not producing quality batsmen because there is no proper cricket structure in Pakistan.
“I have been suggesting for last 30 years to revamp the system of cricket in Pakistan.
“The best batsman of Pakistan at the moment is Misbah-ul-Haq and he was given chance at the age of 34. Mohammad Irfan was selected at the age of 30. At these ages players are normally thinking about retirements.
“It illustrates how poor the system of cricket has become in Pakistan.
“There is clearly a problem in the system which is not picking talent at the right time.”
Imran, arguably the greatest cricketer Pakistan has ever produced, carried the hopes of his nation for two decades from his debut in 1971 to his World Cup swansong at the MCG in 1992.
He said his time playing for the Blues proved to him that the Australian domestic system was the best in the world, and was one Pakistan needed to adopt.
“We need to learn from countries like Australia who have ideal cricket structure,” he said.
“We need to think how Australia produce so many good cricketers and Pakistan despite having talented players fail to polish their talent.
“Pakistan on the other hand have 20 teams. It’s due to substandard teams in the domestic cricket that the talent in Pakistan does not get polished.”