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Hamid Mir: Inzamam is the villain of the piece
Sheela Bhatt in New Delhi | March 21, 2007 14:59 IST
"The people of Pakistan are mourning the death of cricket coach Bob Woolmer. People have turned their rage against skipper Inzamam ul-Haq. Whenever he arrives in Islamabad from the West Indies he will face the anger of the nation," says Hamid Mir, senior journalist of Pakistan's Geo Television. He was summing up the sombre mood of the Pakistani people over Woolmer's suspicious death following the Pakistan's cricket team ouster from the World Cup.
Mir, whose TV channel is relentlessly following up the coach's death in Jamaica on March 18, says, "Bob Woolmer might have committed suicide. He was depressed because he was wrongly blamed for the team's debacle. He was dejected because Inzamam was not listening to him. He was pained because he was not taken seriously by any of the players."
Mir claims that Woolmer was in touch with former Pakistan captain Imran Khan and had shared his frustration with him.
Mir also says the internal political turmoil has led the people into thinking that the root cause of the cricket debacle lies in the politics of the country.
The series of resignations including that of Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman Nasim Ashraf and chief selector Wasim Bari followed the defeats in the World Cup. This is because the top cricket managers fear that they will become target of the people's anger. The PCB chief is a political appointee and people feel that politics is having negative impact on the management of cricket too, Mir says.
Inzamam had already announced his decision to retire from one-day cricket and also stepped down as captain.
Woolmer was hired in 2004 to help Inzamam but their relationship was never mutually beneficial, he said.
Imran Khan used to speak to Woolmer and advice him on how to improve the team's performance. Both were good friends.
Woolmer reportedly told Khan, "I am merely a show-piece. Nobody listens to me. I am not against Shoaib Akhtar or Mohmmad Asif or Shahid Afridi but it is projected wrongly in the media."
Woolmer kept complaining that Inzamam was indulging in nepotism and was having professional jealousy against Akhtar and some others.
Inzamam who once ganged up with PCB's former chairman Shaharyar Khan will have to answer for his past deeds because he is a fall guy now, Mir said.
Mir says, "Our experience in Pakistan suggests that country like ours should not appoint white man as cricket coach. Half of the Pakistani team doesn't know English and coaches do not know Urdu. There is a communication gap and other limitations."
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