Fielding to blame for Pakistan's ICC rankings not reflecting their talent: Grant Bradburn

Sohail Imran
Head of High Performance Coaching Grant Bradburn. Photo: Reporter

Grant Bradburn, the head of high-performance coaching with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), has said that Pakistan's international ranking does not reflect the amount of talent its cricketers have, adding that that dissonance owes something to the poor fielding standards. 

"Pakistan has capable cricketers but it is not in the top five of Tests and ODIs," said Bradburn, who is from the New Zealand. "Even in T20s we have slipped a position and are now second."

Bradburn, who was the national team's fielding coach before a restructuring of the National High Performance Centre saw him move positions, knows where the problem lies.

"The batsmen and bowlers here have a lot of skill but the fielding has a lot of room for improvement," he said. 

"The fielding in the National T20 Cup was certainly very weak. [To improve that] we need to improve fitness levels as both are deeply interconnected. If fitness gets better, fielding gets better."

Bradburn made it clear that to raise fitness and fielding standards, a concerted effort from both the players as well as coaches is needed.

"We need to raise the standard of our fielding coaches," he said. "The coaches have a major role. They will have to work hard and keep the players active.

Pakistan has had many great cricketers who have deep knowledge of the game. We need to turn them into great coaches so that they can transfer their knowledge into the current generation of players."

'Pakistani culture similar to New Zealand's'

Bradburn, who has been a part of the national setup for a while now, also shared his experience of living in Pakistan.

"I do not have any problems living in Pakistan," he said. "My time here has been great and I enjoy the culture here. It is similar to New Zealand's.

"I like music and painting, and that's how I spend my time here. I like playing guitar. Azam Khan and Mohammad Hasnain play, too, while Shan Masood is trying to learn.

"Here, I should also mention Sarfaraz Ahmed who sings very well."

Bradburn further said that he likes daal (lentil curry) among Pakistani dishes but stays clear of spices.

Furthermore, he said he was trying to learn Urdu from fellow NHPC officials Nadeem Khan and Saqlain Mushtaq but has so far not been able to grasp the language.

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'Fielding to blame for Pakistan's ICC rankings not reflecting their talent'