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Sunday, May 22, 2011


Pakistan cricket board will keep a close eye on Afridi’s performance against Ireland

PCB’s decision to remove Shahid Afridi from the post of skipper has also put the all-rounder‘s performance under vigilant monitoring. The PCB will keep a close eye on his performance against Ireland.
Even after his departure from captaincy, Afridi was still able to claim his spot in the One Day International squad of Pakistan, for the two one-dayers against an inexperienced Irish side.
According to PCB’s new decision, Misbah-Ul-Haq who is currently leading the test-squad of Pakistan, will also be rendering his services as the skipper of the ODI side.
Pakistan cricket board still refuses to provide any justification for the decision, however, the decision followed Afridi’s remarks about the team management’s interference during Pakistan’s tour to West-Indies.
After ending the ICC World Cup 2011 as one of the leading Wicket takers of tournament, Afridi’s performance, especially as a leg spinner, deteriorated.
The former skipper, during his tour to West-Indies, managed to take only 2-wickets in five One Day Internationals, with 28 runs in three innings to his name.
Comments that landed the all-rounder in trouble were, “Everyone in the team should mind their own business”. PCB considered the statement as a violation of their prescribed code of conduct that resulted in relinquishing Afridi’s captaincy.
But as Afridi was keen to play against the Ireland before leaving for fund raising in the US, PCB thought it was in the best interest of team to retain him in the squad as an ordinary member.
PCB highlighted another reason behind sacking the all-rounder as the skipper. According to PCB officials, Afridi failed to prove himself as an inspirational figure for the Pakistan team and that served as another factor behind the board’s decision.
PCB’s final decision regarding the future of the former skipper rests upon the report that is to be presented by manager, Intikhab Alam, after returning from West Indies.
Afridi was handed over the task of leading the Pakistan team in June last year. He emerged as a successful choice after clinching the series win against England and South-Africa.
He also proved himself as an inspirational leader in the ICC World Cup 2011, when he led an under-rated Pakistani side to the Semi-final stage of the tournament.
Afridi captained the cornered tigers in 34 One Day Internationals, out of which, the Green Shirts stood victorious 18 times. It seems that Afridi’s regime as captain somehow proved to be a beneficial one for the ODI squad.
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