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Pakistan launch hunt for first foreign coach

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    Pakistan launch hunt for first foreign coach

    The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has announced that it had begun the search for the country's first foreign coach.

    Former England batsman Geoffrey Boycott is among candidates to replace Javed Miandad, who was sacked on Tuesday.

    "I believe now it has become a universal practice of having a foreign coach. I have no hesitation in saying that the experiment has done wonders for the teams who have gone for it," director of the PCB Munawwar Rana told Reuters on Wednesday.

    "The candidates for the job will be shortlisted by the advisory council of the board very soon. But I am not sure if the foreign coach will be appointed before the team leaves for England early next month," he added.

    Pakistan will play two tests in May and then will take part in a tri-nation one-day series in June with England and Australia.

    "Geoffrey Boycott could possibly be one of the men to be discussed for the job," Rana added.

    The former England captain spent 12 days coaching at the Pakistan National Cricket Academy in Lahore in February and is due to make further visits in May and October.

    "Not me but the whole world admits that Boycott is one of the finest men around. His knowledge and observation of the game are second to none," said the chairman of the PCB, Tauqir Zia.

    The precedent of Bob Woolmer (England), Duncan Fletcher (Zimbabwe), Dav Whatmore (Australia) and John Wright (New Zealand) taking over at South Africa, England, Sri Lanka and India respectively, has inspired the PCB's decision to hire a foreign coach.

    But some former test cricketers believe it would be a mistake.

    "The idea would not work in this part of the world because of the different culture. Communication between the coach and the players is the integral part but unfortunately most of the Pakistan players don't understand English," said Intikhab Alam, a former captain and longest serving Pakistan coach.

    "There have been successful coaches in Pakistan who will surely deliver if given the same backing and authority which Javed Miandad enjoyed before he was dumped," he added.

    But Zaheer Abbas is backing the idea.

    "If rest of the test-playing teams have been successful with foreign coaches, there must be some reason. Pakistan cricket is already down and can't slip further even if the foreign coach fails. The experiment is worth giving a try," he said.