Afridi must reconsider Test retirement decision

Karachi: Former Pakistan captain Imran Khan has advised Shahid Afridi not to retire from Test cricket and continue to lead the side in England.

Imran, who is in London, spoke to Afridi over phone and asked him to reconsider his decision to retire from five-day format.

We at bring you the excerpts.

“Imran told Afridi that he should convince the board to recall Muhammad Yousuf and Younis Khan to the side immediately for the Test matches and drop Danish Kaneria,” a report in the “Express” daily newspaper said today.

But Afridi, the report added, politely declined Imran’s advice.

“Afridi told Imran that he was not fit enough to play five day cricket.”

The “Jang” daily newspaper also reported that Afridi had infact informed the PCB Chairman in advance that if he didn’t feel comfortable playing Test matches, he would not carry on.

“When Ijaz Butt offered him the captaincy, Afridi told him if he, at any stage, felt that he was not good enough for Test matches then the board should appoint someone else in his place. So his decision was not unexpected,” the report said.

Apparently Butt was not surprised when he was told by the team management consisting of Yawar Saeed and Waqar Younis about the retirement of Afridi.

“But it is true that the manager and coach were not aware nor taken into confidence by Afridi before he announced his decision at the end of the Lord’s Test,” the report stated.

The flamboyant all-rounder faced a lot of criticism over his sudden decision to retire immediately after the first Test defeat against Australia with many former players insisting Pakistan cricket has been turned into a joke by the current set up of officials and players.