T20 World Cup: Gilchrist sees ‘passion’, ‘unconditional commitment’ behind Hayden’s successful time with Pakistan

Legendary Australia wicketkeeper-batter Adam Gilchrist sees passion and unconditional commitment behind his former opening partner Matthew Hayden having a successful time with Pakistan as their team mentor in the ongoing Mens T20 World Cup.

The unflappable Hayden, seen as one of the greatest openers ever produced by Australia, has been a glove-like fit for Pakistan as their team mentor in the ongoing showpiece event. Brought in by PCB Chairman Ramiz Raja, Hayden has propelled the side from the brink of elimination to reach the title clash against England at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Sunday.

“I would say his passion and his unconditional commitment to the role, which has been obvious for everyone to see. Those little snippets show just how much he invests himself into any commitment that he has, any relationship that he has.”

“So it’s far from just being a job opportunity to earn some money and get a nice resume built up around coaching and consulting. It’s something he takes very seriously, as would Mike Hussey with England,” Gilchrist was quoted as saying by foxsports.com.au.

The Gilchrist-Hayden ODI partnership continues to be Australia’s most prolific opening pair, amassing 5,409 runs at an average of 47.44. Gilchrist, currently a member of the commentary panel for the tournament, recalled an off-field instance that convinced him about Hayden’s huge impact on the Pakistan team.

“On the evidence, my son and I were going through the airport after the Adelaide games and the Pakistan team was in transit and they were all just hanging around Haydos. Hanging on every word. It was amazing. I think that just summed it up. The pride and the passion he has in any role he takes on.”

The former left-handed batter feels that mentoring Pakistan this year and sharing his knowledge with Babar Azam & Co. has been a fulfilling experience for Hayden, who was a batting consultant with the same side during their semifinal run in the 2021 T20 World Cup in the UAE.

“In speaking with him, what’s really impressed him and he’s found quite enjoyable from his role, and his perspective of the role, is just how eager the Pakistan players are to try and absorb any information from him.”

“Any knowledge, any experience he was able to garner from a hall-of-fame career, particularly around World Cups, playing so successfully and dominantly in a couple of World Cups. He says they’re just like sponges, eager to learn and tap into that.”

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