Former all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez recently discussed the fitness standards of the current Pakistan cricket team.
Hafeez, who previously served as Director of Pakistan cricket team; during a podcast with Michael Vaughan and Adam Gilchrist expressed concerns about the team’s physical condition under past management, including coaches Mickey Arthur and Grant Bradburn, and current captain Babar Azam.
He highlighted that inadequate focus on player fitness affected the team’s performance in recent Test series in Australia.
Hafeez also mentioned a conversation with the team’s trainer where he was disappointed with the trainer’s adherence to directives from previous management regarding fitness standards.
“When I retired from this team, I ticked all the boxes of fitness. If I could do it at the age of 41, then why can’t the others? As I joined the team as Director, I noticed the fat percentage of the players had gone up, and the running ability went down. I asked the trainer what had happened. Why the players aren’t able to go through the tests?” Hafeez questioned.
“He revealed a very shocking fact that the last management asked him to put the fitness equation out and let the players play how wanted to play till the World Cup 2023,” he continued.
“I was like, why didn’t you resign straight away if you feel like someone is asking you not to do your job? Just say that this is not the way to deal with international cricketers, so he said, I can’t do anything because at that time, whatever management said to me, I followed their directions. That was why we were struggling in the final innings of the Test series against Australia. We looked fatigued because we were missing that fitness level,” he concluded.
Earlier, Hafeez disclosed that fitness was not given priority and expressed concern over the neglect of fitness within the team, citing discussions with then-captain Babar Azam and the coaching staff.
Hafeez noted a concerning trend regarding the players’ body fat levels, which are crucial indicators of fitness and performance
It is worth noting that Pakistan has faced a string of disappointments lately, including poor performances in the Asia Cup and the ODI World Cup.
They suffered a Test series whitewash against Australia, with Shan Masood taking over the captaincy from Babar Azam. Additionally, they lost the T20I series to New Zealand by a significant margin.

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