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Younis may lose vice-captaincy
May 30, 2005 16:58 IST
Pakistan vice-captain Younis Khan may have to pay a heavy price for his clash with skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq and Shahid Afridi during the first Test against West Indies after the Pakistan Cricket Board, while confirming the incident, decided to launch an inquiry into the fracas.
With team manager and a senior PCB official Saleem Altaf saying that proper investigations will be carried out and the player found guilty penalised, media reports in Pakistan said Younis Khan's contract as vice-captain may not be extended due to the incident in Barbados.
"The incident was of minor nature and Shahid Afridi has been verbally warned. But I will hear the version of both the players and anyone found guilty would be penalised because there is no word like pardon in my books," Altaf was quoted as saying by The Jang.
The brawl involving the trio after the first day's play in the Barbados Test when Afridi misbehaved with stand-in skipper Younis Khan over his batting position, with Inzamam supporting the flamboyant all-rounder was reported in the media on Sunday.
Altaf said Afridi and Younis Khan were good friends.
"They are good friends but the incident happened when the two got involved in an argument with Afridi telling Younis that he should have informed him before hand if he had to open the innings. Later, Inzamam intervened and hushed up the matter," Altaf said.
The newspaper said while it was unlikely that Younis Khan's contract as vice-captain would be extended, it quoted an unnamed source as saying that the player was temperamental and an emotional character.
"Saleem Altaf has conveyed to PCB chairman Shaharyar Khan that Younis was an unpopular player in the team because of his stubbornness while Inzamam was well respected because of his easy manners," the report said.
"In the backdrop of Saleem Altaf's report, it looks certain that Younis be relieved of his duties as Inzamam's deputy."
Interestingly, this is the second major incident involving Inzmam and Younis Khan. In the 2003 World Cup at Bulawayo, the two had clashed while playing in a football match.
Ironically, both the incidents -- at Barbados and Bulawayo -- took place under the nose of Shaharyar Khan who was the manager of Pakistan cricket team for the World Cup. He was also in Barbados to watch the Test which Pakistan lost by 276 runs inside four days.
Another daily, The News, said Younis Khan was facing stiff resistance from his fellow players in his new role as vice-captain and a likely future captain.
"Younis had already started facing minor problems from few players even while he was captaining the side in the last two one-day internationals in St Lucia due to the forced absence of Inzamam," the report said. "Even in the final ODI, Younis faced problems with Abdul Razzaq who showed his displeasure when he was told that Rao Iftikhar would bowl the death overs."
"Razzaq wanted to bowl in the final overs but Younis told him that he would like Iftikhar to do this and that left the all-rounder unhappy and in a bad mood," the daily quoted a source as saying.
The paper said the clash between Younis and some senior players should not surprise those involved in the game.
"It's no secret that Inzamam and few of the other players were never happy at the sudden promotion of Younis as vice-captain in place of Yousuf Youhana before the Indian tour.
"Inzamam was never happy with this change in status quo as far as the vice captaincy is concerned but given the team was touring India and the jobs of the coach, captain and careers of some other players was on the line, the team gelled together to beat the old enemy.
"The discontent over Younis' promotion remained until Barbados and only increased because as luck would've it whenever he led the side in Inzamam's absence it enjoyed success. Then one has to understand that Younis has always been a bit of an outspoken character and a bit too brash for the liking of the captain and his supporters in the team," the paper said.