Counselling of players cannot be done after they become ‘stars’ says Waqar Younis

KOLKATA: Waqar Younis feels it is easier to give lessons in etiquette to aspiring Pakistanis cricketers than expect seniors to change. After all, he said, the established players are “stars”.

It is not as if the Pakistani coach has no expectation of his senior team members; for instance, he has a specific word of advice for Umar Akmal – deliver first, demand a batting position of choice later.

For the rest of the team, Waqar says it is best to be careful when it comes to speaking to the media, as “it hurts” to learn about a grouse from the papers the next day.

Waqar was responding to a set of questions on disciplinary issues from this correspondent including talking out of turn to the media.

The former great said the team comprised “a good bunch of people” and that “as a helping hand”, he was trying to ensure “it [making loose statements] did not occur”.

‘Team is family’
According to Waqar, the ongoing camp at the Gaddafi stadium was very important to unite a team fractured by Mohammad Amir’s inclusion for the New Zealand series.

“I am sure it will help and bring them [the players] closer,” he said.

“It’s human to make mistakes, and when somebody has made mistakes and people have been forgiven, I think it’s time to move on.”

When asked specifically about players talking out of turn to the media, Waqar likened the team to a family and that it made him “feel sorry” to read about internal differences in the papers.

“This is a family environment, you are talking about family, you don’t go out and tell,” he said.

“I think the board should also look into this situation.”

Waqar also blamed the media for “blowing up” issues, saying when people lived together for three-quarters of a year, a “few odd things happen here and which is normal and common”.

At the same time, his unhappiness over players airing their views in public was obvious. “They should concentrate on the job they were given rather than talking about these things,” he said.

“As long as it stays within the walls, stays within the dressing room, it is good. But when it comes out in the media – which is so much now – then it hurts a little bit.”

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