The ODI World Cup was a disaster for Pakistan as the Babar Azam-led side crashed out of the competition even without reaching the semi-final stage. India, on the other hand, performed exceedingly well and reached the final without losing a match. They won all their 10 matches before facing Australia in the final when the hosts suffered a humiliating defeat at the hands of the Aussies. Days after the conclusion of the World Cup, BJP MP Gautam Gambhir and former Pakistani cricketer Wasim Akram announced their unity on one critical aspect affecting the game.
Both Akram and Gambhir agreed with each other on the need for hiring local coaches and other support staff for the national teams. Akram minced no words when he slammed the foreign coaches of Pakistan for the shambolic performance of the team in the World Cup.
Gambhir, himself a former India opener, told a website that an Indian should be the head coach of India and a Pakistani should coach the Pakistan’s national team. Wasim Akram said, “I agree hundred percent. What gave me a great happiness this time that almost the entire coaching staff of India were Indians.”
Pakistan’s World Cup squad was being coached by three foreign nationals. While Micky Arthur was the Team Director, Grant Bradburn was the team’s coach with Morne Morkel being the bowling coach.
Speaking to the SportsKeeda website, Gambhir said that the problem with the former players in India and Pakistan were their inability to speak fluent English and give slick PowerPoint presentations. “The emotion Rahul Dravid or any other Indian will carry by wearing Team India T-shirt, no foreign coaches would have that. The emotion that a Pakistani player would carry by wearing a green T-shirt, no overseas individuals would have that.”
Gambhir said that India have had a successful history with cricketers who had won the World Cup trophies. He said that if players who won India World Cup trophies in the past wanted to enter coaching, they should be welcomed.
Akram said, “Our foreign coaches are only here (in the country) when there’s a cricket tour. If Pakistan are not on a tour, you should come to the NCA to coach the cricketing talent and even coach the budding coaches on how to manage the psychological aspect of the game. They arrive just before the tour and leave immediately after after the tour. They’ve just fooled us all along.”