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PCB appoint Ijaz Ahmed head coach for U-19 side
Pakistan News

PCB appoint Ijaz Ahmed head coach for U-19 side

Ijaz Ahmed has been appointed as the head coach of the Pakistan U19 team for the next three years, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced on Monday.

He will also be working closely with the Pakistan U16 side and Pakistan 'A' sides and will take up the role of head coach after the conclusion of the ACC U19 Asia Cup 2019 on September 14.

The former Test batsman has been involved in several different coaching capacities, serving as the head coach for the Pakistan 'A' and U19 sides in the past including the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup 2010.

Ijaz was also the assistant coach of the national side in 2010 and was selected as the combined coach for the Pakistan team alongside Waqar Younis briefly for the England T20I series during the same year.

The 60-Test veteran was chosen for the position following interviews conducted by PCB MD Wasim Khan and Director Academies Mudassar Nazar.

“I am thankful to the PCB for trusting me with the important responsibility of grooming and nurturing the future stars of Pakistan cricket," Ijaz said.

"Junior cricket is a lifeline for any cricketing nation; as it sees talented youngsters graduate to senior cricket and carry forward the legacy of some of the greatest cricketers this proud nation has produced," he added.

“I am excited with this opportunity and look forward to playing my part in what are exciting times for Pakistan cricket.”

Ijaz's first assignment in charge of the junior sides will be the 'A' team eight-nation tournament in Kenya next month.

The focus remains on the ICC U19 Cricket World 2020 in South Africa with Pakistan having achieved the title twice in the history of the tournament.

Nazar confirmed his belief in Ijaz's ability to steer the Pakistan U19 team to enormous success.

“I have seen Ijaz Ahmed develop as one of the most talented coaches. He has a vision and strategy. He is hardworking and has a reputation of being a good student of cricket who can analyse the game and spot talent," he said.

“I have no doubts Ijaz will make a significant contribution as the Pakistan U19 coach as the PCB has stepped up its endeavours to not only narrow the gap with international cricket but provide equal and fair opportunities to all the budding youngsters in the country."

Earlier, it was reported that Saqlain Mushtaq had shown interest in coaching the U19 side but Ijaz has been preferred by the PCB over his former team-mate.