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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Upbeat Afridi hits the gym

 These are hard times for Shahid Afridi. The former Pakistan captain is facing an uncertain future as a professional cricketer because of a bitter battle with the country’s cricket chiefs, which is now being fought in the court of law.

During a span of a few weeks, Afridi has lost his captaincy and even lost his right, at least for the time being, to make a living by playing professional cricket abroad. He has ‘retired’ from international cricket and is now fighting what could be a long drawn legal battle with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB).

Things certainly look bleak for Afridi, who till last month was making plans to help Pakistan raise a strong team for next year’s World Twenty20 Championship in Sri Lanka.

But the seasoned allrounder remains upbeat in spite of all the trouble.

Afridi, who is waiting for the June 16 hearing of Sindh High Court, is keeping himself fit by carrying out training sessions on a daily basis. “There is no point in fretting over what has happened in the last couple of weeks,” he told ‘The News’. “The most important thing for me is to get a NOC to play in the Twenty20 tournament in England. I remain hopeful for it and am keeping myself in shape by carrying out strenuous training sessions daily,” he added.

Afridi had to return home from England after the PCB revoked all No Objection Certificates granted to the player after suspending his central contract for “violating” the Boar’s Code of Conduct.

Due to his decision to retire and the ongoing tussle with PCB, many of Afridi’s critics believe that the allrounder’s international career is almost over.

But the 31-year-old Afridi doesn’t think so. “I will play cricket till the time I’m fit. Right now, I’m in good shape and I’m working hard in the gym and in practice,” he said.
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