Shahid Afridi Quits International Cricket




Shahid Afridi

Shahid Afridi

Shahid Afridi, Pakistan’s recently axed one-day captain has announced his retirement from International Cricket after weeks of growing speculation and tension among the all-rounder, board council and the coach. However Afridi’s retirement is a ‘conditional’ one in protest against the ill-treatment he received by the PCB. However, it is more of a self-imposed exile rather than a permanent goodbye to International Cricket. Afridi stated that he is ready to reverse this decision when a new cricket council comes into action.

An angry and emotional Afridi stated “There is nothing bigger than a man’s respect, and the way the board has treated me, there is a limit to everything.”

“I will not play under this board. If a different board comes in, I will definitely return but I cannot play under this board. When you have been humiliated like this, by dishonorable people, what is the point in playing on?

“The way I’ve been treated … the future doesn’t look too good. I can’t play under a board that doesn’t respect its players. Because of this, under protest, this is a conditional retirement.”

Afridi, a Karachi lad, also lashed out at a Lahore Lobby following regionalism that has been wandering upon the Pakistan Cricket. The Karachi officials have angrily protested against the Pakistan Cricket Board for not considering the players from the city for selection.

The whole drama fueled up last December, when the board was hesitant in appointing Afridi as the captain. However, Afridi was appointed as the captain for the New Zealand ODI series, which Pakistan won. Within two weeks before the tournament began, he was elected as the Captain for the World Cup. The inconsistent nature showed by the PCB towards Afridi was one of the reasons which left the Karachi boy fuming.

Afridi added “I wasn’t told anything when I was made captain, I wasn’t given a tenure, I wasn’t told what my squad would be, nothing,” Afridi said. “I took a broken team along with me. When I took over the Pakistan team was in the middle of the spot fixing crisis. “Then the Zulqarnain Haider case happened but my side fought both against England and South Africa in the ODI series. Then we beat New Zealand, we got to the semis of the World Cup and beat the West Indies there as well. Maybe I have become a thorn in their throats. It’s better that I step aside for now as I have respect for myself.”

However, the saga fueled up the most after Pakistan returned from a series in West Indies. There was growing tension for a long time between the all-rounder and the coach, Waqar Younis, over selection issues. Afridi later lashed out saying that such differences do occur in the team but others should mind their own business which gave PCB another chance to humiliate the captain. Afridi was asked for an explanation for such a statement. It was very obvious from Board’s point of the view that Afridi was leaking the team news to media; however Afridi did not point fingers on the selection issue before announcing his retirement.

Soon after Pakistan returned from West Indies, PCB sacked Afridi from his captaincy without giving any reason for removing the all-rounder from the leadership position. However, PCB chairman Ijaz Butt said “We had very solid reasons to remove Afridi and I will reveal them when the time is right.”We haven’t taken this action without any reasons.”

It is difficult to predict how long Afridi will stand with his decision, but for the time being it is a big loss to Pakistan cricket. Afridi led the team to the semis of the World cup where they lost to their rivals host India. He has been Pakistan’s most effective and successful bowler in the recent years and has been the main strike force for his team. The Pakistan fans must be hoping for his quick return to International cricket.

However, Afridi will be playing the Friends Provident T20 tournament for Hampshire in England. He will also take part in the inaugural Sri Lankan Premier League and will continue to participate in Pakistan domestic cricket as well.

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Ankur Shukla

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Hello to each and every sports lover out there. I am Ankur Shukla from Mumbai, 20. I currently appeared for my graduation exams i.e. Bachelor of commerce and economics from Mithibhai Motiram Kundani. I am a sports freak, cricket and football being my first love. I cannot really differentiate between the two. I am an aspiring journalist, a sports journalist. Sports have always been my first love and will continue to be for the rest of my life. Sports always attracted me. It is just within me. I always try to gain knowledge and update myself about recent happening in the sports world. Even before my exams had started, I started working on my writing skills and to my surprise I realised I was pretty decent in it. I was looking for some internship programme where I could sharpen and improve my knowledge and skills. I would really like to thank Sports Mirror for giving me this wonderful opportunity. I am really thankful for the faith they have shown in me, and I promise that I will make the most of this opportunity and contribute in the most effective manner.

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