Afridi steps down as Pakistan T20 captain
Pakistan veteran Shahid Afridi has stood down as captain of his country’s Twenty20 team following their disappointing showing in the ICC World T20.
Afridi, who has retired from Test and ODI cricket, vowed to play on in the game’s shortest format.
“Today I wish to inform my fans in Pakistan and all over the world that I am relinquishing the captaincy of the T20 Pakistani team of my own volition,” he said in a statement.
“On this day, I thank Allah (SWT) for His Kindness and Mercy which enabled me to discharge my leadership duties, to the best of my abilities, for the sake of the honour and prestige of my motherland.
“For me it was a great honour to lead my country in all three formats of the game. My profound thanks to the PCB and its chairman Mr. Shahryar Khan Sb. Who gave me the honour to lead the national team.
“I would also like to inform that InshaAllah I intend to continue to play the game for my country and league cricket etc, and request my fans to kindly keep praying and supporting me for my best future performances for Pakistan (as a player); and in all other arenas of the game, world over.”
Afridi played one match-winning hand at the World T20 – 49 from 19 balls against Bangladesh – however the 36-year-old allrounder has been inconsistent for his country in recent times, prompting strong words from Pakistan legend Javed Miandad before the tournament.
WATCH: Afridi stars as Pakistan rout Bangladesh
“How can you have a player when no one knows how he will perform?” Miandad told Aaj News last month.
“Afridi’s time in the team was over a few years back.
“How can you expect to win or improve your cricket when a player who stopped being a reliable performer some years ago is still playing in the national team?”
In recent days, a report written by coach Waqar Younis emerged in which the former paceman blasted Afridi’s performance as captain.
“Over several occasions, I had made it clear that Shahid Afridi was not performing with the bat, ball or as a captain but I was not listened to,” Waqar wrote in a report revealed by ESPN Cricinfo.
“There was no training by the boys during the PSL (Pakistan Super League), it was more a holiday for them.
“They came to the Asia Cup tired and unfit.”
Overall, Afridi captain Pakistan in 43 T20Is, scoring 597 runs at 15.71 and taking 40 wickets at 27.12.
WATCH: Was this Afridi’s swansong?