Captain Misbah-ul-Haq might have backed the idea but Pakistan manager Intikhab Alam does not believe that the formation of a players association will help reduce the endless controversies haunting the national team.
“The reason for the problems that hit the national team from time to time is rooted in the fact that many players are not properly educated or groomed. I don’t think a players association would have the funds or resources to undertake this gigantic task of addressing these issues,” he said.
Intikhab, a former Test captain, also made it clear that Pakistan’s cricket environment is not conducive for a players association.
“What can be done is that the players have a proper spokesman for them who can talk to the board on their behalf when there is some issue and who can talk to the board to get the best deal for players when contracts are signed and agreements are made,” the former Test leg-spinner said.
There have been attempts in the past to have a players association in Pakistan but failure of seniors to agree on a common agenda and constitution have led to such attempts not meeting with any success.
Intikhab, however, admitted that the players needed to be commended for putting up good performances despite the problem of being forced to play away from home all the time.
“Let me tell you this is not easy for them. They are missing their families and the natural home support and encouragement that comes with playing a series at home.
Unfortunately due to circumstances there has been no international cricket in Pakistan since 2009 and this is hurting our development and that of the team,” he noted.
Intikhab said the Pakistan team would have been doing far better and also have improved rankings if they had been able to play their recent “home” series at home.
“It makes a huge difference and that is why I say these players deserve lot of credit for performing despite this problem. I would say many of the players have become mentally stronger because of this problem and are maturing well.”
The Pakistan manager had no doubt that once Pakistan returned to playing at home it would also help the younger players develop more discipline.