Yasir Arafat on Mickey Arthur’s radar to be Pakistan’s new bowling coach

F.P. Report

LAHORE: Mickey Arthur, who is in line to become the team director of the Pakistan men’s national team, has reached out to Yasir Arafat, the former fast bowler, for the role of bowling coach. It is understood that the PCB wants three separate coaches – for batting, bowling and fielding – to work with Arthur after he comes on board.

As things stand, there is no formal arrangement between Arthur and the PCB, an in-principle agreement has been reached. It is also understood that as team director, Arthur will not be with the Pakistan team at all times, or travel with them, but link up only during major assignments. This is to ensure Arthur can continue to work with Derbyshire in the English county circuit.

Arthur has also shortlisted Grant Bradburn, the former Pakistan fielding coach and head of coaches’ education at PCB’s high-performance centre till late 2011, as an assistant coach.

Arafat, now 40, has worked in coaching roles with Sussex in England, and with the Hong Kong men’s team, and recently completed the ECB’s Level 4 coaching course.
Though he played just 27 games in the international arena, across formats, he has a wealth of experience in domestic cricket, playing 207 first-class games, 257 List A games and 226 T20s in a career that lasted over two decades. Along the way, he played in Scotland, Bangladesh, England, New Zealand, South Africa and Australia, apart from Pakistan. His last representative game was a first-class affair for MCC, in Kirtipur against Nepal in 2019.

While he made his international debut against Sri Lanka, in an ODI in Karachi in 2000, Arafat’s Test debut – in December 2007 in Bengaluru – as well as last international appearance – at the 2012 T20 World Cup – came against India.

The PCB is trying to put the coaching staff in place after an overhaul at both the administrative level and the cricketing level late last year. Shaun Tait was the last Pakistan bowling coach, in the staff led by Saqlain Mushtaq. Their next series is in late March against Afghanistan in Sharjah, and will be followed by a tour by New Zealand.