Sunday, November 23, 2008

Team mates support Malik

Malik's style of captaincy had come in for severe criticism from several former players including Imran Khan, Ramiz Raja and even current coach Intikhab Alam.

In a more damning indictment, middle-order batsman Mohammad Yousuf said he had joined the unauthorised Indian Cricket League in part due to Malik's style of leadership.

But the Pakistan Cricket Board hinted that Malik would be retained as captain after the team's 3-0 series triumph over the West Indies in Abu Dhabi.

"Nothing has been decided about Malik's captaincy, but I think he is committed," said PCB chief executive officer Saleem Altaf.

"He is young and if he gets a chance he might prove himself a good captain."

Younis Khan, who struck a century in the final match against the West Indies, also backed Malik.

"He is learning with time and with every match," said Younis, who was among the contenders to take over if Malik was sacked.

"I suggest that people should leave him alone. He should be made captain for four to five years because he comes under pressure every time there is talk about changing the captain."

Former skipper Wasim Akram, a staunch critic of Malik earlier in his reign, seems to have changed his mind following the recent success.

"Until last year I believed Malik wasn't a good choice as captain, but he has proved me wrong by performing really well in most of the matches Pakistan have played this year," Akram said.

"I think he should be retained."

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