Afridi axed from ODI squad

Published: December 11, 2012

Afridi’s omission from the ODI squad did not come as a surprise given his poor form this year where he has scored just 182 runs in 16 matches and taken 15 wickets. PHOTO: AFP

KARACHI: 

Pakistan cricket selectors have done what some hoped they were incapable of doing while others hoped they would not do: drop Shahid Afridi.

Afridi finally paid the price for his poor form this season – the former captain has scored just 182 runs in 16 One-Day Internationals (ODI) at an average of 15.16 while also taking 15 wickets at 43.13 – and failed to find a place in the 15-man squad for the 50-over format. He does, however, keeps his place in the Twenty20 squad despite having scored just 118 runs this year in 11 matches and taking just eight wickets.

There was good news for another former captain, Younus Khan, who made his comeback to the ODI squad after being dropped from the series against Australia in the UAE. Opener Imran Farhat, too, returned to the 50-over format but there was no place in either squad for all-rounder Abdul Razzaq despite his terrific form in the recently-concluded National Twenty20 Cup.

The axe also dropped on Imran Nazir, Yasir Arafat and Mohammad Sami while a good show in the domestic handed call-ups to Umer Amin, Mohammad Irfan and Asad Ali and also a Twenty20 recall to Ahmed Shahzad, who was the highest run-scorer in the domestic Twenty20 event. Junaid Khan was also included.

It was tough to drop Afridi: Qasim

Afridi’s omission from the ODI squad was on cards due to his poor form in recent months.

The experienced all-rounder also failed to impress selectors at the Twenty20 Cup, scoring just 75 runs and taking seven wickets from five matches.

“It was a tough decision to drop Afridi from ODI squad,” said Iqbal Qasim after announcing the squads. “He’s a great player and has contributed a lot to the Pakistan team. The decision has been taken in the team’s interest. I am hopeful he will bounce back with a good show in the Twenty20s.

“The problem with Razzaq, however, is that he’s a player who should be in the playing-XI. If we can’t adjust him in the playing-XI then there’s no point having him in the squad. But this doesn’t mean his career is over. He will remain in contention until he continues playing cricket.”

Double birthday gift for Babar

The ODI squad also saw the return Wahab Riaz who grabbed a five-wicket haul in the 2011 World Cup semi-final against India in Mohali.

Meanwhile, left-arm spinner Zulfiqar Babar, who turned 34 yesterday, was handed a double birthday gift after being named in both squads. Babar has been a consistent performer in domestic cricket and has 62 wickets under his belt in the President’s Trophy.

An injury to young Raza Hasan led to his selection in the team, according to officials close to selection committee.

“I am ready to launch my career despite being 34,” Babar had said before his selection. “I have the example of Saeed Ajmal who started very late but has been very successful.”

On the tour, Pakistan will play two Twenty20s from December 25 besides three ODIs that take place from December 30.

 ‘Afridi not planning ODI retirement’

Meanwhile, Afridi has no plans to retire from ODIs despite his exclusion from the squad, according to a close aide of the former captain.

“He will never retire this way,” the aide told The Express Tribune. “Afridi wants to quit on his own terms and not after being dropped from team. Right now, he will focus on doing well in the Twenty20s and will continue the hard work and make a comeback to the ODI squad.”

ODI

Nasir Jamshed, Mohammad Hafeez, Azhar Ali, Younus Khan, Misbahul Haq, Imran Farhat, Umar Akmal, Haris Sohail, Kamran Akmal, Saeed Ajmal, Wahab Riaz, Junaid Khan, Umar Gul, Anwar Ali, Zulfiqar Babar

Twenty20

Mohammad Hafeez, Ahmed Shehzad, Nasir Jamshed, Kamran Akmal, Umar Akmal, Umar Amin, Shoaib Malik, Shahid Afridi, Saeed Ajmal, Mohammad Irfan, Junaid Khan, Sohail Tanvir, Umar Gul, Asad Ali, Zulfiqar Babar

Published in The Express Tribune, December 11th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (23)

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Dec 11, 2012 - 12:41AM

    For his own reputation Afridi should refuse to go to India for maximum 8 overs when bowling and 2 balls when batting.

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  • Green Oval
    Dec 11, 2012 - 1:30AM

    Cockiness, arrogance and ego sooner or later catches up with you. You do not beat up your fan who turned up at the airport to welcome you on the pretext of protecting your child. Hope that Afridi learns a lesson or two from this episode and become a better person and embrace success and fame with modesty and humbleness.

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  • JJ
    Dec 11, 2012 - 1:49AM

    BUT WHY? Because he scored 182 runs in 16 One-Day Internationals.May be he come out from his BAD time..

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  • Pk_Guy
    Dec 11, 2012 - 1:52AM

    Afridi bhai dont make it hard on your self like Sachin. Time to retire buddy. I don’t know on what basis the selectors have selected him even for the 20/20 format ?

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  • Sinner Proselytisers
    Dec 11, 2012 - 5:34AM

    It’s about time.
    Congrats to the selectors for making bold selections on important tours.
    But, what has to be done has to be done.

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  • Ali
    Dec 11, 2012 - 7:32AM

    Afridi bahi dont be selfish like tendulkar i think its your best time for retirement with dignity unlike tendulkar..

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  • joe
    Dec 11, 2012 - 8:19AM

    surely he wont mind being axed from the team. after all he has a “big heart”

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  • M
    Dec 11, 2012 - 10:31AM

    On whose parchii is Imran Farhat still in the team? Clearly its not his father-in-law who is not t chief selector anymore.

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  • JB
    Dec 11, 2012 - 11:20AM

    Afridi’s exclusion is understandable. But why Razzaq? Can the Pakistan team for once, not involve itself in politics and personal differences and play for the country?

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  • Ammar
    Dec 11, 2012 - 11:36AM

    Afridi !! give one final blow to Misbah lovers before retiring please !!! .. hope to see you back in form for one final time .. love you ..

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  • Sheikh Salman
    Dec 11, 2012 - 11:42AM

    Imran Farhat selected again…Congrats ;-)

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  • Sheikh Salman
    Dec 11, 2012 - 11:44AM

    Where are talented players like Muhammad Talha, Hammad Azam, Babar Azam????

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  • abs
    Dec 11, 2012 - 12:02PM

    Well pple agree or disagree but as far as i understand cricket you can not drop fighters / match winners from the team. Even if he is not performing you have to take chance specially when playing India under pressure. Anyway hope he is back with a bang in T 20 and in ODIs soon. All the best Lala

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  • kamran khan
    Dec 11, 2012 - 2:19PM

    Lahore Lions were 147 for 2 in the 19th over before two quick wickets of Muhammad Yousuf and GREAT AKMAL BROTHErR (Umar Akmal, 19.3 ov) were claimed by left-arm spinner Nayyer Abbas. With 13 runs required in the last over, two singles were taken off the first two deliveries, before Umar Akmal was caught out. New batsman Abdur Razzaq hit a six off the first ball he faced, and then took a couple of runs before hitting a six off the last one,

    He takes Lahore lion to a fabulous Victory and this is not the first time he has done this so many occasion and he is AXED !!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yikes …….. GOD BLESS team Pakistan.

    Abdur Razzaq is real Hero and a man with STRONG nerves.

    Selecting such an in experience team to tour India where Pressure is the Most dangerous opponent is seems something like to promote AMAN ki ASHA lets see what happen?

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  • Why only Afridi?!!!!
    Dec 11, 2012 - 2:22PM

    no one will have problems with selection if each and every player is picked on merit. problem occurs when merit applies to some and not to others. Afridi not picked on poor form, agreed!
    But check these stats:

    Younis Khan: last 12 odi, 162 runs, avg 13.5!
    Umar Gul: odi this year, 539/13, bowling average 41.46!

    so why pick the above players and drop afridi, i won’t waste my time on farhat as everyone knows his story as it is!
    Hence, it is strange that on a page full of Afridi haters, none f those commenting have bothered to highllight the above mentioned players.

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  • Rehman
    Dec 11, 2012 - 3:22PM

    @Why only Afridi?!!!!:
    Einstein Both Umer Gul and Younis Khan were dropped during Australian series. They played good amount of domestic cricket, performance of both players in domestic cricket is satisfactory.

    Now lets talk about your Afridi Angel:

    He do not want to play List A matches for HBL, later he asked for his inclusion in HBL team. Which is not possible. Clearly shows he thinks no one can drop him.
    Care to tell us Afridi this year performance? He is rightly dropped. Now he should play QA trophy gain confidence and form.

    Until then please stop showing your love for Afridi.

    Thank You

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  • yasirmalik
    Dec 11, 2012 - 5:17PM

    wonderful peice of selection by board . I think the selector is of blind cricket team,what should Razzaq do more u were blind that night when he hit a winning shot in semi final against sialkot stallions

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  • up for a change
    Dec 11, 2012 - 5:20PM

    good riddance!! better late than never..

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  • Godil
    Dec 11, 2012 - 5:37PM

    You say Abdul Razzaq should be in the playing XI (of ODIs) – and then he should perform in T20s

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  • qazishakeelahmad
    Dec 12, 2012 - 7:52PM

    overall it is bad selection,they should select inform players like razzaq,azhar mahmood..

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  • Dec 12, 2012 - 7:55PM

    Overall it is bad selection,they should select inform players like abdur razzaq,azhar mahmood..

    Recommend

  • Dec 12, 2012 - 7:58PM

    overall it is bad selected team.they should select inform players like abdur razzaq,azhar mahmood..

    Recommend

  • Dec 12, 2012 - 8:01PM

    bad selection:overall it is bad selected team,they should select inform players like abdur razzaq,azhar mahmood.

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