Shaheen Afridi to topple Babar Azam as Pakistan captain? Shahid Afridi's explosive revelation

Published - 15 Jun 2024, 03:41 PM | Updated - 15 Jun 2024, 03:45 PM

Babar Azam, Pakistan National Cricket Team, ICC T20 World Cup 2024, Shahid Afridi
Babar Azam and Shahid Afridi (Credits: Twitter)

Former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi has given a stern reply to talks of removing Pakistan players from the national side after their poor show in the ICC T20 World Cup 2024. Shahid Afridi pointed out that Pakistan does not have players to replace players like Babar Azam or Mohammad Rizwan. 

Notably, after Pakistan's miserable show in the ICC T20 World Cup 2024, there are rumors that many players will be ruled out of the team. There are talks of changing the entire team and numerous TV shows have witnessed former players and experts citing such recommendations. 

Pakistan lost their first two games against the USA and India in the ICC T20 World Cup 2024. Pakistan faced a shocking super-over defeat against the USA and later lost to India in a low-scoring encounter. Later, as the USA vs Ireland game was washed out and the former got 1 point, Pakistan was ruled out of the World Cup with one more game to go. 

Also Read: Watch - Suryakumar Yadav's wife and Rohit Sharma give contrasting reactions after batsman gets huge reprieve against USA

Do you have someone like Babar Azam or Mohammad Rizwan: Shahid Afridi

After news of Pakistan players getting snubbed did the rounds on the internet, former Pakistan legend Shahid Afridi appeared on his YouTube channel to slam the idea. Afridi noted that such a step would be useful if Pakistan had good bench strength. 

“We have been hearing much these days that eight to nine players will be removed, it does not happen like that. You remove eight to nine players when you have that many boys waiting”.

He also questioned who would replace mighty players like Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan in the current side. Afridi also feels removing players on the basis of three games is a huge injustice. 

“If you are talking about removing Babar as a player, then do you have someone like him? Do we have a player capable of replacing [Mohammad] Rizwan? These types of talks are done when you have a strong bench,” Afridi said.

“You need to give respect to your domestic players; they play all year and give great performances. These players play all year domestic cricket, and if we ignore their performances and bring a player on the performances of three matches, then we are doing injustice,” he further said.

Also Read: Watch - Sybrand Engelbrecht takes the catch of the tournament to remove Litton Das during BAN vs NED T20 World Cup clash

Players should play in domestic cricket first: Afridi

Shahid Afridi, a former all-rounder, also reckoned players like Azam Khan or Saim Ayub should play consistently in domestic cricket and maintain their fitness before getting into the national team. 

"The players from this team be it Azam Khan or Saim Ayub, they should be told to play domestic cricket for two straight years and maintain their fitness. The selection committee should ensure that if you want to play for Pakistan, then you have to do such and such thing,” he added. 

Babar Azam was the T20I skipper ahead of the ICC T20 World Cup 2024

Notably, Babar Azam was named T20I skipper just ahead of the ICC T20 World Cup 2024 after his good show in PSL 2024. Shaheen Afridi was removed from the post after Pakistan lost 4-1 to New Zealand in January. He held the post for just one series. 

Interestingly, Babar Azam was the skipper of Pakistan in all three formats last year. He left the captaincy from all sides after Pakistan's poor show in ODI World Cup 2023 in India last year, where failed to reach the semis and also lost to Afghanistan for the first time in ODIs. 

However, Babar Azam was reinstated as the white-ball skipper ahead of the T20I World Cup. Unfortunately, the decision backfired as Pakistan faced their worst-ever show in the T20I World Cup during the last few years with a first-round exit.