Mudassar Nazar, the former Pakistan batsman, has said he couldn’t achieve all his goals he had set for himself for the development of the game as chief of the National Cricket Academy in Lahore. Three of Pakistan Cricket Board’s long-serving former Test players - Mudassar, Haroon Rasheed and Agha Zahid - spent their last day at the NCA on Sunday as the Board ended their services to restructure and convert the academy into a High Performance Centre.
“I couldn’t do the development work that I wanted in the last four years at the academy,” he said.
“Yes we did build two high-performances centres in Multan and Karachi. But I wanted to set up more such centres in other cities. Perhaps one reason for this is the financial health of the board. I also wanted to do more development work but I couldn’t do it properly. But if I look back at my four years then I am proud to say that when I took charge there were no proper programs at the NCA,” he said.
Mudassar, who has close ties with Prime Minister of Pakistan and former Test captain Imran Khan, insisted he had never tried to take advantage of his friendship with Imran during his stint at the NCA. “I have never tried to take advantage of my relationship with Imran because that is not the way I work nor will I ever do it in future,” he said.
He said he was proud of the work he had done at the NCA. “I am proud of the U-13 talent hunt and development program I started as head of the NCA. It has given us some very fine talent,” he said.
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Youngsters like Naseem Shah, Shaheen Shah Afridi and Muhammad Hasnain had benefited from the academy, he pointed out. “I am also proud to see other youngsters like Muhammad Musa, Rohail Nazir and Haider Ali also in line to play for Pakistan and that makes me feel proud.”
Mudassar felt it was unfair to target the NCA for its performance every time. “I was always surprised that whenever the board was criticised, the NCA and its staff also came under fire. It is easy to criticise anyone sitting outside without knowing the true facts of what is happening inside,” he said.
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