Mahmood opens up about criticism after accepting England consultancy role

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LONDON, AUG 30 (DNA) – Former Pakistan all-rounder Azhar Mahmood has no qualms about coaching England during the ongoing T20I series.

Mahmood, appeared in 164 international matches for Pakistan and was their bowling coach under Mickey Arthur before a new regime led by former captain Misbah-ul-Haq was installed last year after a disappointing World Cup.

Now, the 45-year-old, who knows many of the England coaching staff from his time in county cricket, has been brought in as a bowling consultant by the hosts for the three-match T20I series in Manchester.

Mahmood, while talking, expressed happiness in passing his ‘experience’ regardless of the nationality.

“Cricket has given me a lot,” said Mahmood. “Now I want to pass on my experience — it doesn’t matter whether a player is from England or Pakistan or wherever.”

Mahmood, criticised within Pakistan for his England role, said his situation was no different from the one he often found himself in as an in-demand all-rounder.

“I’m a professional, I’ve played in leagues with different teams,” he explained. “I know my role.”

England head coach Chris Silverwood has handed over the reins for the series to assistant Graham Thorpe, a former England batsman who played alongside Mahmood at Surrey.

Another England connection is with white-ball captain Eoin Morgan — he was with Mahmood when the former Pakistan international was coaching Karachi Kings in the Pakistan Super League (PSL).

“They have seen my ability working with players,” he added. “Eoin Morgan told me ‘we know your skills’. They are a really great bunch of people, the England coaching staff, and this is a great opportunity for me.” DNA

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