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Azhar Mahmood replaces ‘fatigued’ Mushtaq as Pakistan bowling coach

Azhar Mahmood replaces ‘fatigued’ Mushtaq as Pakistan bowling coach

Former Pakistan all-rounder Azhar Mahmood has been included to the Pakistan coaching staff for the Asia Cup and World T20, and is expected to join the national squad in Dhaka on Thursday.

According to the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), regular bowling coach Mushtaq Ahmed was ‘too fatigued’ and will rejoin the team ahead of the England tour in June this year.

“Mushi has been rested for two events as he was too fatigued,” Pakistan’s team manager told ESPNcricinfo.

“Mahmood is a good replacement for the interim, being a T20 specialist. He will join the squad later this evening,” he added.

The former leg-spinner last represented Pakistan in 2003 and has been a part of the Pakistan coaching staff and team management since 2014.

Mushtaq, 45, since retiring as a player, established himself as a well-reputed spin bowling coach, and had a coaching stint with England as a spin-bowling consultant.

One of the most lethal leggie’s of his era, Mushtaq has played a vital part in getting the best out of Pakistan’s Saeed Ajmal and Yasir Shah, both of whom proved themselves as genuine wicket-taking options before going out-of-favour for different reasons.

Mahmood, on the other hand has been a seasoned T20 cricketer since his last international outing in 2007, and has represented top league sides around the world.

The 40-year-old brings to the Pakistan dressing room precious experience of 225 T20 matches.

Pakistan play their first Asia Cup fixture on Saturday against arch-rivals India while the World T20 Super-10 stage kicks off on March 16.

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