Former all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez is set to step in as the Pakistan Head Coach for upcoming tours to Australia and New Zealand, as reported by ESPN Cricinfo.
Recently appointed as the director of the national men’s team, Hafeez will potentially take on the dual roles of team director and head coach for the three Test matches in Australia and the five T20Is in New Zealand during December and January.
Surprisingly, the decision to appoint Hafeez as Pakistan Head Coach comes despite his lack of prior coaching experience. However, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) seems to have opted for this unconventional move.
The Pakistan squad is scheduled to depart for Australia on November 30, gearing up for a warm-up match against the Prime Minister’s XI at the Manuka Oval from December 6 to 9. The first Test of the series is slated to kick off in Perth on December 14.
The West Test schedule comprises:
- First Test: December 14-18, Perth Stadium
- Second Test: December 26-30, MCG
- Third Test: January 3-7, SCG
Following the Australia tour, Pakistan will head to New Zealand for a series starting on January 12, encompassing five T20Is in different cities.
The PCB recently announced new captains for the T20I and Test formats after Babar Azam’s resignation. Shan Masood will lead the Test team, while Shaheen Afridi will captain the shorter format.
Azam resigned from all formats after declining to retain the Test captaincy when offered by the PCB. Despite his leadership since 2019 in white-ball cricket and from 2020 as Test skipper, Pakistan didn’t secure any ICC or Asia Cup titles under his tenure.