Misbah emerges as front-runner for Pakistan cricket coach

Pakistan cricket captain Misbah-ul-Haq speaks during a press confernce before the team's cricket training session at the SCG in Sydney on Jan. 2, 2017. (AFP)
Updated 27 August 2019

Misbah emerges as front-runner for Pakistan cricket coach

  • Former coach Mickey Arthur was axed following a disappointing World Cup
  • Australian batsman Dean Jones and ex-West Indies paceman Courtney Walsh are also in the running, Pakistan media says

KARACHI: Former captain Misbah-ul-Haq Tuesday emerged as the favorite to take over as Pakistan’s cricket coach after Mickey Arthur was axed following a disappointing World Cup.
Misbah, Pakistan’s most successful Test captain, has stepped down from the Pakistan Cricket Board’s executive committee to clear the way for his application.
“I have resigned from the cricket committee and have applied for the post of Pakistan’s head coach,” said the former batsman, describing the position as a “dream.”
The four-member executive committee declined to renew Arthur’s contract after Pakistan failed to reach the semifinal of the World Cup in England and Wales.
The PCB did not reveal whether anyone else had applied for the post. However, Pakistani media said former Australian batsman Dean Jones and ex-West Indies paceman Courtney Walsh were among the applicants.
Misbah said competition for the job would be tough.
“It is interesting to see my name emerging in the media even before I had applied... I envisage there will be a few more very competent and highly qualified people applying for one of the most challenging jobs in the game,” he added.
Misbah totaled 26 wins in 56 Tests as captain, with 19 losses and 11 draws. He retired in 2017.
Pakistan are likely to announce their new head coach ahead of the limited-overs series against Sri Lanka starting in Karachi from September 27.


Doctors warn over Delhi’s ‘suicidal’ half-marathon

Updated 27 November 2020

Doctors warn over Delhi’s ‘suicidal’ half-marathon

  • Organizers say the “highest level of safety-standards, with bio-secure zones” have been laid on for the race starting at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium
  • Delhi has been hit by a winter pollution crisis each year for the past decade when crop-stubble burning from nearby states, cold temperatures and car and industrial pollution produce a toxic mix

NEW DELHI: Top doctors have warned elite runners are taking a major health risk by competing in Sunday’s New Delhi half-marathon in the midst of a major coronavirus outbreak and soaring air pollution.
Women’s marathon world record-holder Brigid Kosgei from Kenya and Ethiopia’s two-time men’s winner Andamlak Belihu are among the 49 elite athletes running the 21-kilometer (13.1 mile) race, while thousands of amateurs are taking part virtually.
Organizers say the “highest level of safety-standards, with bio-secure zones” have been laid on for the race starting at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
But with New Delhi recording more than 500,000 virus cases, and air quality in the world’s most polluted capital hovering between ‘unhealthy’ and ‘hazardous’, health experts said the athletes should think twice.
“It will be suicidal for runners to run the race this time. We have such high levels of pollution, we have the risk of coronavirus,” Arvind Kumar, founder trustee of the Lung Care Foundation, told AFP.
“With the presence of this twin threat if people are still running despite knowing everything, well, I have no words to express my anguish.”
“Whether you are an international elite runner or you are a small boy from a village, the damaging potential of a damaging agent remains the same,” said the doctor.
Randeep Guleria, director of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), the country’s top research body, told AFP that “in an ideal situation” the race should not be run.
“Because of high levels of air pollution, exercising outside in this weather sometimes can lead to aggravation of underlying lung problems,” he said.
“Even if you are an elite runner the air pollution would still affect your lung.”
Normally thousands of amateurs would also take part, but because of the coronavirus they have been told to run their chosen route between Wednesday and Sunday and chart their time on an app.
Delhi has been hit by a winter pollution crisis each year for the past decade when crop-stubble burning from nearby states, cold temperatures and car and industrial pollution produce a toxic mix.
This year, the Indian capital is also a major concern in the battle against the coronavirus. India is the world’s second worst-hit country behind the United States, with about 9.3 million cases.
The city is considering imposing a night-time curfew because of the rising number of cases, according to media reports.
Kosgei, who is visiting India for the first time, acknowledged her concerns about traveling for the race.
“We have definitely been affected by Covid-19. I had to convince my parents and family back home to allow me to visit Delhi for the half-marathon,” she said.
“The virus has affected most of the sporting events. But it is important for us to take care of ourselves.”
As in other countries, nearly all sport in India has been canceled.
After repeated delays, the Indian Premier League cricket went ahead in the United Arab Emirates and the Indian Super League football is being held in a bio-secure “bubble” in Goa.