Why did Younis Khan quit as Pakistan batting coach?

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Former batting coach Younis Khan. File photo
Former batting coach Younis Khan. File photo

KARACHI: Former Pakistan batting coach Younis Khan revealed Thursday he parted ways with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) after he allegedly received a threatening phone call from the board’s director of international cricket. 

Khan, the only Pakistani who captained the national squad to a T20 World Cup victory in 2009, was speaking at a private news channel where he revealed the reason for quitting the coveted post of batting coach. 

The former batting coach said he left a players’ camp in Lahore as he had to take care of his dental surgery and also spend time with his family before the team departed for back-to-back tours in England, West Indies and the T20 World Cup. 

“Everyone knows my situation; I have a wife and three kids,” he said. “If I cannot give time to my children, how can I give time to the youngsters of Pakistan?” he added. 

Khan said he informed the PCB that he would not be able to join the team on its upcoming tour as he had undergone dental procedures on June 16 and June 18. 

He said his doctor had advised him to join the camp on June 22 or June 23 since he was due for another procedure. The board, however, wanted Khan to join the bio-secure bubble from June 20. 

However, Khan said he received a threatening phone call from the PCB director of international cricket, who told the former captain that since he did not report to the bubble on June 20, he cannot travel with the team on the England tour. 

Khan said then, the PCB director asked him whether he “remembered what we (PCB) did with Mohammad Hafeez” or not. 

“I told him ‘I am Younis Khan, not Mohammad Hafeez,'” Khan revealed. 

Hafeez had been dropped in February from the national squad after he did not make it to a bio-secure bubble owing to his T20 cricket league commitments. 

Khan said he resigned as batting coach in January as well after the PCB’s high performance centre started interfering with his duties. 

Khan said he took back his resignation when PCB CEO Waseem Khan apologised for the incident. The former batting coach said he was not informed about the bio-secure bubble by the board, adding that he received a call on June 22 from the board’s doctor who asked him why he hadn’t joined the bubble yet.

“I told him it isn’t possible for me to join the bubble as I have a surgery coming up,” he said. 

2009 players revolt

Khan spoke about the 2009 revolt within the Pakistani dressing room, where almost the entire team revolted against him, when he was the captain of the squad. 

“If the players had problems with me they could have spoken to me. They claimed that they didn’t want me removed as captain but just wanted the cricket board to speak to me to change my attitude,” he said. 

“Then how is it that when the player’s met with the then PCB Chairman, Ejaz Butt, one senior player, apparently Afridi demanded the captain be changed. To me it was about captaincy ambitions,” he added. 

Khan said that during the last couple of years before he retired, all he did was focus on his cricket and kept himself aloof from any other controversy. 

When asked about his sudden retirement from ODIs in 2016, Khan said:

“It was not abrupt at all. I had made a decision beforehand I would retire from ODIs as I was not selected in the ODI playing eleven for the last two years,” he added. 

Khan said the night before he played his first match, in 2016 after being out of the squad for a few years, he phoned the chief selector (Haroon Rasheed at the time) to thank him. 

“I told him I was thinking about retirement from ODIs and he turned around and told me rudely that it was up to me but he had got me selected for the series against England and I (Younis) should just listen to the team management and play as they wanted,” disclosed the former batting coach. 

Khan said he got upset at the tone and then resigned from ODI cricket. 

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