Ajmal happy with Whatmore
Lahore - Pakistan's spin magician Saeed Ajmal has said on Wednesday there was no difference between Dav Whatmore and a local coach -- apart from his pay packet and the language barrier.
Whatmore, who played seven Tests for Australia, has regularly come under fire in Pakistan from former stars who say a local would do a better job of coaching the misfiring national side.
The pressure grew on the 59-year-old after Pakistan's humiliating defeat against Zimbabwe last month, with the daunting prospect of a series against world number one Test team South Africa just around the corner.
Ajmal, 36, told Geo Super television Whatmore "doesn't know our language much".
Asked what he thought the differences were between a local and a foreign coach, Ajmal replied: "There is no difference, just that we are paying more to him, otherwise there is no difference.
"Dav is a foreign coach, he doesn't know our language much, but he has done coaching for various countries and has helped them win," said Ajmal.
Ajmal said previous coaches Waqar Younis and Mohsin Khan handled the team well.
"Waqar handled us better. He used to emphasise the fitness of the players," said Ajmal of former Pakistan paceman Waqar who was coach from March 2010 to September 2011.
Former opener Khan then took over and guided Pakistan to a 3-0 win over then-world number one England in the UAE early last year.
But Ajmal insisted he was not unhappy with Whatmore, who coached Sri Lanka to a famous World Cup victory in 1996.
"I am not saying that I am not satisfied, he (Whatmore) is a good coach and helped Sri Lanka lift the World Cup," said Ajmal.
Whatmore's two-year contract ends in February next year and the chances of his deal being renewed are remote. Ajmal said the Pakistan Cricket Board should consult players when they appoint a replacement.
Ajmal's spin partner Abdul Rehman said he also felt there was a language barrier between players and the coach.
Incensed at Ajmal's remarks, Whatmore tweeted he was hurt with what the off-spinner had to say about him.
"Just read Ajmal's quotes. Deeply upset and hurt by his remarks," Whatmore tweeted. "Just when you think you know someone."
In a later tweet, Whatmore said Ajmal has apologised.
"Ajmal has personally come to apologise to me and explained the context of what he ment (sic) and I have accepted," he wrote.
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