Woodhill`s batting coach role `baffles` Pak cricket greats

Updated: May 02, 2013, 12:54 PM IST

Sydney: The appointment of former Australian cricketer as Pakistan`s batting coach for the ICC Champions Trophy has been met with bafflement in the country, with former greats saying that they have never even heard of the Australian.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) had appointed Woodhill for three weeks after the team`s disastrous performance with the bat during their recent tour of South Africa.

Unimpressed with Woodhill`s appointment, former Test captain Hanif Mohammad, a long-time record holder of the first class score of 499, said that he has heard Woodhill`s name for the first time in his life, adding that he is surprised that the PCB chose him without even verifying his credentials.

Echoing Mohammad`s views, former wicketkeeper and captain Rashid Latif also claimed ignorance, saying that he has nothing to say about a coach who is almost unknown, adding that batting legend Javed Miandad should have been helping the batsmen, instead of Woodhill.

Former captain Moin Khan also agreed with Mohammad and Latif, saying that Inzamam-ul-Haq should have been given the job as he is among the numerous big names in the country, and is also a much better choice than an unknown person.

The report mentioned that Inzamam worked as batting consultant with the team ahead of their tour to India in December-January but negotiations with the 120-Test veteran fell through in February.

However, PCB director of international cricket Intikhab Alam has defended Woodhill`s appointment, saying that he has rich experience as batting and fielding coach.

According to the report, Pakistan will play warm-up games against Scotland and Ireland before the eight-team Champions Trophy starts on June 6.

Woodhill is currently assistant coach at Delhi Daredevils, second bottom in the Indian Premier League, and has had previous spells with New Zealand and domestic Australian side New South Wales.