Woolmer calls on Shaharyar Khan

Published: Wednesday, February 9, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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Karachi:Coach Bob Woolmer called on Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan and tried to convince him that the team was improving with every game and he was optimistic about the upcoming tour of India.

"Woolmer told the chairman that the team was improving with every game and was optimistic about the forthcoming tour," sources close to Shaharyar said.

Woolmer, however, expressed concern over the fragile top order, which he believed was the root cause of their debacle Down Under.

"But his only concern is the top order failure that, according to him, was the root cause of Pakistan team's failure in the VB Series final against Australia," the sources said.

During the meeting, which Woolmer described as "productive" before leaving for South Africa, the coach gave his viewpoints on various issues on the recent Australian tour and the forthcoming visit to India besides discussing other cricket related matters.

"Basically, Woolmer gave his views on the just concluded Australian tour and also gave his mind on the team combination for the forthcoming Indian tour. The meeting was cricket related but yes, they discussed a couple of other issues also," the sources added without elaborating those issues.

The English-born South African, Woolmer, felt that although the team did not win the Test or the one-day series in Australia, the team's performance was neither disappointing nor poor as it was being said and reported.

"Woolmer also complained about the standard of umpiring in the tri-series finals," the sources said.

In reply, Shaharyar assured Woolmer of his complete support and hoped that the team would soon start winning.

"Shaharyar, nevertheless, told Woolmer that everything was now history and they should be well prepared for the mother of all series," they said.

According to manager Haroon Rasheed, Woolmer will return on February 19 a day after announcement of team for the Indian tour.

Pakistan will leave for New Delhi on their first tour since 1999 on February 25 for a three-Test and five One-Day International series.

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