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Page last updated at 11:19 GMT, Wednesday, 3 March 2010

New head coach Waqar Younis aims to revitalise Pakistan

Waqar Younis
Waqar is ready to take on a role which is something of a poisoned chalice

Waqar Younis aims to create a more aggressive and unified Pakistan team after becoming their new head coach.

Former Pakistan captain Waqar, 40, has reportedly agreed a contract up to and including the 2011 World Cup.

"My first target is to get the guys to play a little more aggressively," Waqar told the BBC Asian Network.

He will replace Intikhab Alam, who was relieved of his duties following the team's poor results on their recent tour to Australia.

Pakistan failed to win a single Test or one-day international and also lost the lone Twenty20 match during the tour.

Since 1995, the board has changed its coach 14 times, with former England player Bob Woolmer enjoying the longest stint from 2004-07, which was ended by his sudden death during the 2007 World Cup.

Waqar also cited a lack of togetherness among the players as a reason for their under-performance in Australia.

Skipper Mohammad Yousuf subsequently blamed divisions in the team on one unnamed player, prompting all-rounder Shoaib Malik to accuse him of reopening an old dispute between them from 2008.

"We have to bring unity - I think that is what has been missing," said Waqar.

Their next assignment is the defence of their World Twenty20 title in the Caribbean, which will be followed by a tour to England.

"It's a young side and the England tour is going to be a real tough one. It's a challenge and I'm really ready to take it," Waqar added.


His appointment has been confirmed by Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ijaz Butt, who said that foreign consultants would be appointed to assist Waqar on a series-to-series basis as required.

Waqar took almost 800 wickets for Pakistan in 87 Tests and 262 one-day internationals between 1989 and 2003. He formed a formidable fast bowling partnership with Wasim Akram and was regarded as one of the game's finest exponents of reverse swing.

He later had a spell with the national team as a specialist bowling coach in 2006-07.

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see also
Mohsin Khan accepts Pakistan role
02 Mar 10 |  Pakistan
Pakistan hire Intikhab as coach
25 Oct 08 |  Pakistan
Waqar quits Pakistan coach role
07 Jan 07 |  International teams
Waqar protests Pakistan innocence
22 Sep 06 |  Pakistan
End of a unique career
07 Apr 04 |  Cricket

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