Salman Butt, Kamran Akmal and Rao Iftikhar appointed as assistant consultants by the PCB

By Real11 - Dec 1 2023 243 Views

Salman Butt, Rao Iftikhar and Kamran Akmal to help chief selector Wahab Riaz

Pakistan Cricket Board has appointed former international cricketers Rao Iftikhar Anjum, Kamran Akmal and Salman Butt as consultant members to chief selector Wahab Riaz. 

The three will straightway take up their role in the selection panel. Their first assignment as consultant members commences with Pakistan's five match T20I series against the Black Caps that begins from January 12 post the conclusion of their test tour down under. 

The PCB stated that when the trio are not involved in selection duties, they might be handed additional duties such as conducting skill camps. 

Both Anjum and Akmal have essayed the selection role before. Akmal, who made 53 Tests, 157 ODIs and 58 T20I appearances for Pakistan in an illustrious career spanning 15 years before hanging his boots from all forms of cricket this February, was appointed chair of PCB’s junior selection committee previously this year. He was also named the chair of an eight men selection committee, which would conduct Under-13, Under- 16 and Under-19 trials for the selection of the district and regional teams. 

Anjum represented Pakistan in one Test, 62 ODIs and two T20Is for the Shaheens, and was a part of the three-man committee when Shahid Afridi was named the interim chief selector of the Pakistan national men’s team along with Abdul Razaq later in 2022.

However, this is the first instance former skipper Salman Butt will be undertaking an official role with the PCB since his return from a long time ban for his role in the spot-fixing scandal of 2010. He was Pakistan’s skipper during the ban. The southpaw never donned the Pakistan colours after that incident, though he did play first class cricket and was also offered the commentator’s job by the PCB in 2020. 

The appointments will raise some questions. Butt was banned and served time for his involvement in the match fixing scandal in 2010, but both Wahab and Akmal were interrogated nearly during the same time. Akmal was handed a notice by the international cricket board after the T20 World Cup in 2010- much prior to the fixing incident that exploded that year- though his name was cleared later by Pakistan. After that infamous episode in Lord’s, Akmal did not play another Test match. 

Wahab was also brought into question by Scotland yard in the immediate aftermath of the Lord’s test that year, but was never charged with any kind of offence. He was named the new chief selector of the senior men’s team two weeks back after Inzamam Ul Haq resigned from his position owing to the conflict of interest allegations.

Additionally Mohammad Hafeez was named the team director, and will take on the role of Pakistan’s head coach in Australia and New Zealand. 

Pakistan’s squad for the three-match Test series in Australia was announced on November 20. This will be Shan Masood’s first project as the Pakistan skipper after Babar Azam bowed out from the position in all formats last month.  

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