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Ajmal apologises for remarks about coach


A controversy over the remarks made by Saeed Ajmal, the Pakistan off-spinner and one of the team’s senior players, on the national coach Dav Whatmore seems to have blown over after Ajmal apologised to the coach.

Whatmore had tweeted his displeasure over Ajmal’s comments, after which the PCB had advised Ajmal to meet the coach to clear the air. “I immediately went up to Dav and apologised and explained the context and circumstances in which I made certain remarks,” Ajmal said in a PCB media release.

“Dav has worked tirelessly with the Pakistan team and it would be extremely unfair not to recognise his services. I enjoy very good relations with Dav and am hopeful of continuing this in the coming series.”

Pakistan have not won a Test series since Whatmore, a former Australia international and World Cup-winning coach with Sri Lanka, took charge in 2012. That was on the back of Pakistan whitewashing England in the UAE under Mohsin but, ahead of their return to the region to host South Africa, their most recent result was a 1-1 draw with Zimbabwe.

Whatmore last week described the defeat to Zimbabwe in the second Test as “embarrassing, upsetting and disappointing” but expressed confidence in the team.

Asked about having a foreign coach – Whatmore was born in Sri Lanka and grew up in Australia – Ajmal said during a lengthy interview with Geo TV: “There is no difference, just that we are paying more to him, otherwise there is no difference. Waqar handled us better. He used to stress on fitness and he used to say that if your fitness is good then you are 80 per cent okay on the ground, but if it’s only 20 per cent then you cannot do anything on the ground.

“Mohsin did well. He would scold in front [of the team] if anyone is not taking wickets or a batsman is not scoring, irrespective of if he is senior or junior. If a junior was not performing then he would say that if you don’t, then you will not be able to keep your place.

“Dav is a foreign coach, he doesn’t know our language much, but he is a coach and has done coaching for various countries and has helped other teams win, he is not that bad. We had our coaches, we have our language.” (cricinfo) 

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