Miandad promises resurrection

Published: Monday, April 19, 2004, 0:31 [IST]
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Karachi : Pakistan cricket coach Javed Miandad on Sunday promised a resurgence of the side after its loss to India in the home series but threatened to quit in case of a major shake up in the team management.

"I am sure that this team has the potential to resurge and I can guide this team to improve but I will quit if there are major shake-ups in the team management," Miandad said.

Pakistan suffered a morale sapping 2-3 defeat in the One-day series and went down 1-2 in the Test series against India, for the first time on home soil since the arch-rivals first met in 1952.

Miandad has come under tremendous pressure from the media and from former players for failing to alter the team's fortunes.

Pakistani bowlers conceded too many extras in the One-day matches and were without sting in the three Tests, raising demands to appoint a bowling coach.

They also dropped too many catches in the Test series allowing India to post imposing totals.

"To appoint a bowling coach or a fielding coach is the Pakistan Cricket Board's decision but major changes are not advisable," said Miandad, whose contract expires later this month.

Pakistan's next assignments include a three match One-day series against Sri Lanka in May in Malaysia, Asia Cup in Sri Lanka in July and then a home series against Zimbabwe in October. Pakistan also have a tough tour of Australia for three Tests and a three-nation One-day tournament also involving the West Indies.

"This team has the potential and can do better than what they did against India but we need time to mould this team," said Miandad, who played 124 Tests for Pakistan.

Miandad's first tenure as coach lasted for nearly one year and he left the post after a fallout with some senior players, 15 days before the 1999 World Cup.

His second tenure began in March 2000 but ended when he was sacked after Pakistan's disastrous tour of New Zealand.

"I am not bothered about my job because Pakistan cricket comes first for me," said Miandad.

Miandad said it was harsh to criticise Pakistan team for losing both the series to an experienced side like India.

"I admit bowling was our strength, but it let us down in both versions of the game," he said. "But then the top six Indian batsmen have proved on all types of wickets around the world that they are capable of scoring big hundreds.

"But winning a Test match and fighting till the end in the One-day series is a creditable performance from our team," he said.

Miandad said Pakistan need to sort out the injury problems to emerge as a strong side in world cricket.

"When you get your key bowlers injured both before and during the Test matches, you are bound to struggle.

"Our main enemy is the injuries to key players and we have to sort it out quickly, if we want to compete against tough teams like Australia, India and South Africa."

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