Karachi:Pakistan Cricket Board may be insisting that Younus Khan had asked for rest but he was apparently forced to step down from captaincy for the Test tour of New Zealand after PCB chairman Ejaz Butt refused to back him in the players' revolt.
Well placed sources in the team said that Younus had held a one to one meeting with Butt in Dubai after the one-day series defeat to New Zealand in Abu Dhabi which led to widespread criticism of the captain and team's performances.
Younus had asked Butt to back him and pull up the players who had ganged up against him, but the PCB chief was clearly not amused.
"Younus told Butt some of players were not cooperating with him and letting the team down and they should be pulled up. Butt, however, remained non-committal," one source said.
The source said after Butt kept quiet, Younus told him that he would make things easier by making himself unavailable for the series against New Zealand and Australia.
Butt had been reportedly given a clear message by the players and some former Test captains that Younus should not lead the team for the Test tour of New Zealand.
"Basically, it was a revolt against Younus and Butt bowed to the pressure of the players. It was a case of Butt changing tact within a matter of days. Younus realised this during the meeting because the same PCB chairman had supported him while rejecting his resignation last month," the source noted.
Interestingly, Younus had also excused himself from the Test series in New Zealand and Australia when he had submitted his resignation to Butt after the Champions Trophy.
The source said that problems for Younus had begun the moment the team landed in Abu Dhabi with senior players like Shoaib Malik, Abdul Razzaq, Kamran Akmal and Mohammad Yousuf not willing to cooperate with the captain when they were told they were being rested for one match each.
"Their attitude disappointed Younus and this led to a bad situation in the team. At one stage, Younus was not even on talking terms with many players with the coach and manager silent spectators and unable to resolve the crisis," the source said.
"Yousuf who was named captain in place of Younus was constantly in touch with some former captains in Pakistan seeking advice and Younus heard them at one stage telling the manager Abdul Raquib that Inzamam-ul-Haq should be brought in as coach," the source said.
This is not the first time that the board had to bow to players' revolt. In 1981, the players had revolted against the captaincy of Javed Miandad and in 1994 the players ganged up against Wasim Akram.