ESPNcricinfo understands the PCB will merge the roles of team director and head coach into one, a dual role the former Pakistan allrounder will execute for three Test matches in Australia and five T20Is in New Zealand, in December and January.
It is a significant step up for Hafeez, 43, who last played for Pakistan two years ago and does not have any coaching experience until now. But it is understood the current administration views the two separate roles for team director and head coach as superfluous.
Indeed, Pakistan did not have a team director until earlier this year. Former PCB chairman Najam Sethi, who had made no secret of his pursuit of Arthur, struck a deal with him that would see Arthur travel with the team for certain series and tournaments, while maintaining oversight when he could not be with the side under the stewardship of Grant Bradburn. When both Arthur and Bradburn were with the side, it was felt there was no distinct difference between their specific jobs, something that has prompted the current PCB administration to do away with the extra role.
Pakistan depart for Australia on November 30, and play a warm-up game against the Prime Minister’s XI at the Manuka Oval from December 6 to 9. The first Test begins in Perth on December 14. After the three Tests, the side also plays five T20Is in New Zealand.