Islamabad:Pakistan team manager Yawar Saeed joined current and retired players in voicing concern over the captaincy in the leadup to Younus Khan's decision to stand down for the test series in New Zealand.
The Pakistan Cricket Board appointed middle-order batsman Mohammad Yousuf as captain for the three-test series against New Zealand on Wednesday after Younus asked for a break from international cricket.
"Younus needed serious leadership counseling," Saeed wrote in his manager's report following the Champions Trophy in South Africa last month, according to local reports on Thursday.
Without consistently instilling captaincy qualities into Younus, daily The News quoted Saeed as saying, "he cannot prove a good captain altogether."
The team manager blamed a lack of coordination between Younus and coach Intikhab Alam during the Champions Trophy in which Pakistan lost its last group match in the last over to eventual champion Australia and then went down in the semifinals to New Zealand.
"Younus was not willing to take up the cricketing issues with coach and manager and wanted to do everything on his own," the report said, adding that at no stage during the semifinal against New Zealand did the captain and coach consult over strategies.
Cracks begin to appear within the Pakistan team soon after players returned from South Africa.
Eight players expressed their dissatisfaction over Younus' leadership and lodged a complaint to PCB chairman Ijaz Butt and to the team's vice-captain, Shahid Afridi.
Last month, after rejecting Younus' resignation letter, the PCB re-appointed the 31-year-old batsman as captain through the 2011 World Cup provided he remained fit and in form. That tenure lasted just 24 days before Younus needed "break" from international cricket and Yousuf was selected as Pakistan's third captain this year.
"I feel as if I have no command over this team. And if a leadership has no command over its players, what is the point of continuing to lead?" Younus told cricinfo.com.
Younus admitted that he'd struggled for form in recent times. Pakistan lost a limited-overs series 2-1 to New Zealand in Abu Dhabi on Monday, with Younus scoring only 0, 19 and 3.
He attributed that to distractions "not just with cricket but all that has happened outside it. I need time to get myself together now."
It is not the first time that the Pakistan captain has been sidelined by an unhappy group of players. Javed Miandad stepped down in 1981-82 soon after leading an inexperienced team, then Imran Khan took over.
Miandad was again pushed out in 1992-93 and Wasim Akram took over. In 1994, the players revolted against Akram, too.
The PCB has given no time frame for Younus' return to international cricket - nor has it clearly stated whether Yousuf will also lead Pakistan in three tests in Australia next month.
Afridi said on Wednesday that Younus should have continued to lead the side in the test series against New Zealand to regain his lost form.
"I think he should have stayed because the only way you can regain your form is if you play international cricket," Afridi told Geo Super.
Younus, who averages 50 per innings in 63 test matches, had set few goals when he was appointed as captain after Malik lost the one-day series at home to Sri Lanka earlier this year. Beating Australia in Australia was one of his targets.
It remains uncertain whether he will make the tour to Australia at all, either as captain or batsman.
In one-day internationals, he averages 33 in 197 matches but hasn't scored above 20 in his last six innings.