Younis faces sanction after refusing to be Pakistan's 'dummy' captain

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The Independent Online

Younis Khan has relinquished the role of captaining Pakistan at the Champions Trophy - a decision which could leave him facing disciplinary action.

The experienced Younis was appointed after the regular captain Inzamam-ul Haq was given a four-match one-day international ban for leading a protest against allegations of ball-tampering during the final Test against England at the Oval in August.

However, Younis yesterday announced that he did not want to lead the team under such circumstances. Sitting alongside the Pakistan coach, Bob Woolmer, at a press conference, Younis delivered a one-line statement before leaving. "I don't want to be a dummy captain, and the reason why I have refused the captaincy will be revealed afterwards," he said.

Mohammad Yousuf, another senior batsman, will take over the captaincy having been named vice-captain for the tournament.

A Pakistan Cricket Board statement read: "The Pakistan Cricket Board deeply regrets that Younis Khan chose to announce his withdrawal from the captaincy. He did so without prior consultation with the Board."

The statement went on to describe Younis' actions as a "breach of discipline" - adding that he could face further action. However, he will not be dropped from the Champions Trophy squad, and Abdul Razzaq has been named as vice-captain.

The PCB director of cricket operations, Saleem Altaf, said: "We don't think this is the way to do things. If he had any problems he should have discussed it with us first." Woolmer added: "I am very sad because he is a wonderful player. In due course he will say what those personal reasons are. But we have to put this incident behind us and get on with the job."

Billy Doctrove has been overlooked as one of the umpires for the Champions Trophy. The West Indian, who stood with Darrell Hair in the controversial fourth Test between England and Pakistan, is the only one of the nine remaining elite umpires not to be chosen. It was confirmed last week that Hair would not stand in India, officially for security reasons.

Australia have brought in the spinner Dan Cullen, 22, to replace the injured fast bowler Stuart Clark for the tournament, ahead of the fast bowlers Michael Kasprowicz, Jason Gillespie and Shaun Tait.

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