ISLAMABAD-  Former Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chief selector and one of the most successful coaches Mohsin Hasan Khan Saturday said that Pakistan cricket team would badly miss services of experienced middle order batsman Younus Khan in the Asia Cup to be held in Bangladesh.

Talking to The Nation, Mohsin said: “Younus’ absence can cost the national team dearly as he is the player who not only could strengthen the batting of the green shirts but also could help the team in scoring crucial victories with his superb batting show. As he is an experienced player of the team, he could also give important suggestions to skipper Misbah.”

He said that conditions in Bangladesh are completely different from Pakistan’s. Fifth-over game is not an easy task as it requires exceptional planning and especially batting to play out quota of overs. Pakistan team has a history of not even completing full quota of overs so keeping in mind tremendous experience and technique required at this level, Younus could have been more than handy for the team under the circumstances.”

“The team management is to be blamed for over-utilizing three key fast bowlers during the UAE and South Africa series, especially the way they had totally mishandled M Irfan, who could have been trump card for Pakistan. He was the spearhead of fast bowling alongside Umar Gul, but the team management is to be blamed for excessive utilization of Irfan, Umar and Bilawal Bhatti. Pakistan team will definitely miss Irfan, as for the past one-year or so, he was turned into secret weapon for the team and was a huge threat for the opponents. But now Umar Gul and Bilawal will be more than handy for the team,” he added.

He suggested that the team management must chalk out comprehensive strategy of utilizing players in a befitting manner to save their future. “There was no planning whatsoever witnessed in the past. If the team management continues with same policy, there will be every possibility, more players will follow the same and can be sidelined for longer period of time. Irfan needs extra care due to his extraordinary height and he should be utilized in short spells and only be used when it matters the most. There is no need of playing Irfan in dead rubbers and against lowly-ranked teams,” Mohsin asserted.

“Despite strong reservations, my sincere wishes and prayers are with the national team. I hope and pray they will return as victorious as they are able to defend their title.”

When asked under these tense situation was it right for the national team to tour Bangladesh or they should have skipped the event, Mohsin replied: “Pakistan government and ministry has taken absolutely right and justified stance. Pakistan should have taken first step, when the government of Bangladesh had promised complete security for the team and officials, then it make no sense of turning the back. I fully endorsed the stance of government of sending team to Bangladesh and it would send a very positive signal to others.”

“Somebody had to take a bold stance under prevailing circumstances and Pakistan had done the right thing of opting to mend differences. Extremism should not be allowed to take over sports and the best way of tackling extremism is to adopt positive strategy,” Mohsin concluded.

It is pertinent to mention here that when Waqar Younis suddenly left the national team high and dry, it was Mohsin Khan, who despite being the chief selector, taken over the role of head coach and helped Pakistan team in winning back-to-back series against England and Sri Lanka, especially the 3-0 whitewash against England was the most memorable one. At that time, English team was flying high and on the other hand, Pakistan team was at its lowest ebb, but all his contributions fell on deaf ears as the PCB opted to hand over the coaching assignment to Moin Khan, who had no past experience of coaching even club level sides, so coaching national team is a far cry. The PCB should have instead hired either Waqar or Mohsin Khan, but awarding Moin Khan important role was too tough to digest.