Monday, October 30, 2023
Ex-coach of Pakistan's cricket team, Waqar Younis, on Monday lambasted a private TV channel for broadcasting team captain Babar Azam's private WhatsApp chat reportedly with a senior Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) official during their live show on Sunday night.
The episode has received widespread backlash from former cricketers and netizens who have termed the airing of the chat as an invasion of privacy and an unethical move.
The channel, its host, and its team have been widely criticised for their tactless decision and have been called out for failing to adhere to ethical and moral standards as journalists.
Joining other cricketers in condemning the irresponsible behaviour of the channel, anchorperson, and journalists, Younis took to social media, specifically X (formerly known as Twitter), to express his disappointment.
"What are you guys trying to do??? This is pathetic!!! You guys are happy now. Please leave @babarazam258 alone. He's an asset of Pakistan Cricket," the veteran cricketer said, adding the X handles of PCB, the private television channel and its owner in his post.
Additionally, Azhar Ali, a veteran Test cricketer who was also a panelist in the same show, questioned if the screenshot, sent to the journalist who works for the said TV channel, was used upon Babar's consent.
"Did they take Babar's permission before forwarding the message to him?" Ali asked while pointing towards the journalist who shared the chat with the channel's team.
The Test cricketer also asked if Babar's consent was taken before displaying the alleged message on air, as it was a "personal message".
The journalist, however, defended his act saying that it is his "job" to run something when received. "He did not send the personal message to me."
For the last few days, since Pakistan's poor performance in the World Cup 2023 came under discussion on both mainstream and social media, reports regarding PCB's alleged distancing from captain Babar Azam also started making the rounds, The News reported.
This airing of the alleged message, however, came after veteran cricketer Rashid Latif, during a live show for state broadcaster PTV Sports, claimed that the board's senior management was ignoring the skipper's messages. Soon after, Latif's comments garnered immense traction following which the alleged chat was broadcast during the live TV show.
The former Pakistan skipper claimed that the captain has been sending messages to the PCB Management Committee Chairman Zaka Ashraf, Chief Operating Officer Salman Naseer, and Director of International Cricket Usman Wahla for the last two days, but all three of them are not responding.