Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul Haq received a vote of confidence from Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan, who said the 35-year-old should lead the team at least till the 2007 World Cup in the West Indies.
"Inzamam is the only world class player we have at the moment. He is our best batsman and no one understands the game better than him. I would want him to lead the team at least till the 2007 World Cup," he said.
Khan also said India and Pakistan have agreed to make their cricket rivalry an annual affair with India proposed to tour the neighbouring country for a full-fledged series early next year.
"BCCI and PCB have agreed to make this an annual feature. The Indian team will now visit Pakistan early next year. Then we might have a break as there is the World Cup, but it will resume the year after that," Khan told the BBC Hindi
"And now with the ICC calendar being extended to six years, it will be easier to fit in the series every year."
Speaking about the timing of India's proposed tour to Pakistan next year, he said, "We still have to decide the dates of the tour as our players may be very tired, they have just come back from Australia and after the India series they will travel to the West Indies.
"But I think it will be early next year. We are now sending a proposed itinerary and a list of venues to the BCCI."
Khan expressed scepticism over the possibility of Shoaib Akhtar proving his fitness for the one-day series starting on April 2.
"We have definitely missed him, he will come back when he is fit but his chances of playing the one-day series are 50-50."
The PCB chairman said Shoaib is more useful in Test cricket than one-dayers.
"He has a long run up and bowls really fast, a mere snick can go over the boundary for a six."
Speaking on the issue of the team's vice-captaincy, he revealed Younis Khan has been made vice-captain on a trial basis.
"We are trying a few guys as vice-captains. We have to look towards the future. The other contender for this post is Shoaib Malik who will be the captain of Pakistan 'A' team on its tour of Zimbabwe.
He also tried to justify Yousuf Youhana's removal from the post.
"Youhana is a good batsman but his importance in the team is as a batsman. I think, he should be allowed to concentrate on his batting alone.
"Captaincy has become difficult now. Its not just on the field, you have to show the leadership, make speeches, face the camera, rally players during crisis and this is all on the basis of personality. So we decided to have someone under Inzy who has these qualities."
Khan heaped praise on Indian vice-captain Rahul Dravid and termed him as a "great" player.
"He is just great. I wonder how he keeps so cool during crisis. Our boys are trying to study how Dravid remains aggressive without taking risks. He gave a few tips to Younis Khan and I hope other players learn from him too."
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