ISLAMABAD - Former Test player and inventor of reverse swing in Pakistan Sarfraz Nawaz hailed Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ch Zaka Ashraf’s for not allowing key players like Shahid Khan Afridi, Saeed Ajmal and Umar Akmal to play in Australian Big Bash.

In an exclusive interview with TheNation, Sarfraz said: “Before the all-important bilateral series against India, it is very important to keep your main players fit and the PCB has made the right decision by not granting them permission to participate in the Big Bash and instead directed them to play in the domestic league to gain proper match practice in almost the similar conditions they will face in India.”

Sarfraz criticised the PCB for not allowing M Yousaf and Shahid Afridi earlier to play in the President's Trophy and he also came hard on Basit Ali for not allowing Pakistan's brightest hope Umar Akmal to represent his department SNGPL sighting so-called disciplinary grounds. Umar was in fact busy in his brother’s wedding and Basit took this harsh decision just to accommodate Faisal Iqbal for future tours.

Sarfraz Nawaz backed Zaheer Abbas appointment as batting coach for Pakistan and said: “Instead of Zaheer Abbas applying for the batting coach slot, the PCB should have keeping in mind how services he rendered for Pakistan cricket they should offer him the managerial slot with the national team and taken advantage from his unmatched experience which could have beneficial for the batsmen and the team.”

Talking about the domestic structure, Sarfraz said: “A 10-member committee was formed and they had already submitted their suggestions. If the PCB had followed our recommendations each team could have played at least 22 matches every season and after the four-day matches with one day rest, the teams would have started to play ODIs the same patron which all countries are also following in their domestic cricket and players will remain in better conditions and gain proper match fitness.”  “We have also suggested a separate Twenty20 tournament in which 22 teams would have been divided in to two groups and after the group stage, they will go ahead gradually progressing well and showing great results,” he added.

“I think the PCB chief is confused as he is not implementing already set criteria of domestic cricket instead he is in consultations with different persons and all set to take on board Former skippers Inzamamul Haq and Waqar Younis for improvement in domestic structure. How could Waqar and Inzamam suggest changes in domestic cricket as they both had no experience whatsoever of domestic cricket and they had just played cricket and have no knowledge of implementing modern techniques in domestic structure.”

Sarfraz also questioned the commitment of former Pakistan head coach Waqar Younis, who at a time when he was needed most by the country as three players were facing match fixing allegations, left the coaching sighting health reasons but he applied for Australian bowling coach job where he remained unsuccessful to land the job. Then he started giving expert comments on different sports channels and now Waqar wants to become the director of National Cricket Academy (NCA) Lahore. How a person like Waqar could be given such an important job as his commitment with the country and cricket is doubtful.

The former pace bowler said that the amount of time I had spent with NCA and with his experience, he thought senior General Manager NCA Ali Zia had the credentials and he must be promoted and assigned the job of director NCA as he was a right person to bring revolutionary changes in the academy.

“The PCB chairman must take my suggestions positively instead of getting offended, as I am committed to my country and cricket more than anyone else,” Sarfraz concluded.