Azhar Ali deserved to be treated respectfully: Afridi

Azhar Ali to be treated respectfully: Afridi

KARACHI: Shahid Afridi, the former captain of Pakistan Cricket team, has said that dropping Azhar Ali from Pakistan’s ODI team will not give a good message to players.

Pakistan’s selection committee, on Wednesday, dropped Azhar Ali from the ODI team for the tour of West Indies, and Afridi feels that such step would create difference between player and the board.

Talking to journalists in Karachi, Afridi said that Azhar was captain of Pakistan’s ODI team and he deserved to be treated respectfully like other players.

“Firstly, I support Azhar’s decision to step aside from captaincy, it was a wise decision. But, I believe that the PCB should have allowed Azhar to make the announcement himself, instead of issuing a press release before letting Azhar say anything on this,” Afridi told media in Karachi.

“I also feel that the decision to drop Azhar Ali from ODI team wasn’t the wise one. He was the captain and deserved the respect like other players. Any decision, without mutual respect, could create differences between board and player,” he said.

He said that beating West Indies in West Indies wouldn’t be an easy task for Pakistan and the upcoming tour of Caribbean Island would be very challenging for the men-in-green.

Shahid Afridi also spoke about the ongoing investigation into the spot fixing scandal that had hit the second edition of Pakistan Super League and led to suspension of Khalid Latif, Sharjeel Khan and Mohammad Irfan.

The former captain said that PCB must set an example by never allowing corrupt cricketers to return to the game.

“If a player knows that he can return to team after serving five years of ban, then he wouldn’t have any fear. I have always said that a life ban should be imposed on any form of corrupt activity in Cricket,” he said.

“Every player is repeatedly told by the anti-corruption unit of board that they should inform immediately about any approaches, yet if some players are delaying or not reporting the approach then they are guilty according to the laws,” the former captain said.

Afridi, who’s also known as boom boom, expressed his excitement on the news of Ronaldinho and others coming to Pakistan and said that he’s looking forward to welcome the legendary footballer.

“We all are anxiously waiting to welcome Ronaldinho, this is a very good initiative not just for Pakistan Football, but for Pakistan because it will give a strong message to the world,” he said.

“I would love to play football with him, I may not be able to play like him for 90 minutes, but may be for 10/15 minutes, I am looking forward to it,” Afridi said.


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