Boom Boom March 24, 2010

Afridi brings hope and uncertainty

 
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Shahid Afridi, chosen for now to lead Pakistan's defence of the World T20 title, brings hope and uncertainty © Associated Press
 

Pakistan cricket, impulsive by nature, has appointed its most impulsive captain. Shahid Afridi, chosen for now to lead Pakistan's defence of the World T20 title, brings hope and uncertainty. Many Pakistan fans have lived an odyssey with Afridi, mesmerised by every twist of fortune and wishing him to grow into a player of genuine stature. Mr Boom Boom has been handed an opportunity to live their dream.

Afridi has been a box office cricketer for over a decade but when you analyse his career there are few moments of greatness. A record breaking first hundred in Nairobi, a match-winning Test century in Chennai, and then the World Twenty20 victory. The last two events were a decade apart. His career has been one of spasms of joy punctuating long pauses of disappointment for him and his supporters. Afridi has often thrilled but he has rarely transcended.

His critics, many of whom are Pakistan supporters, will be disappointed at this appointment. Afridi's temperament can be as erratic as his batting. He has had bust ups with team mates, scuffed a Test wicket with a dancer's swivel, and, in perhaps his maddest moment, gnawed a cricket ball when he was captaining his country. Afridi, say his critics, brings uncertainty and every chance that he will further dishonour his people. I beg to differ.

Captaincy is a complex art. Pakistan cricket is a complex environment. Yet the mess that Pakistan cricket finds itself in, much of it self inflicted, demands a simple methodology. Pakistan require their captain to lead from the front. Any dispute of that point was emphatically dismissed by the depression of Mohammad Yousuf's captaincy. Pakistan also require their captain to be aggressive, equally willing to light the fire in the bellies of his fellows and inflame the opposition. A tactical genius would be welcome but isn't essential. Passion goes a long way in Pakistan cricket.

The battered Pakistan team, despite its status as World T20 Champions, is screaming out for the defiance and attitude of Afridi. The challenge for Pakistan's new leader will be to control his most erratic urges, the ones that transgress the laws of cricket. Afridi can do it, provided he is properly supported by his colleagues and management, both of which are unfortunately open to question. But Afridi must be his own man, unbowed by this month's powerplay by the Pakistan Cricket Board. It is always better for a leader to be true to his convictions than, to use an immortal phrase, be a 'dummy' captain.

Shahid Afridi, of course, knows only one way. That is his appeal and his necessity. He brings hope that Pakistan can salvage something from the suicide bomb detonated by the PCB. More than ultimate victory in the T20 World Cup, Pakistan fans should be looking for a united spirit from their team and a competitiveness that has been absent since they lifted the trophy at Lord's. Indeed, in the absence and reluctance of Younis Khan, Afridi is Pakistan's best candidate to lead his country in all three formats.

Whatever the outcome, the Age of Mr Boom Boom will be compulsive viewing.

Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/KamranAbbasi

Kamran Abbasi is an editor, writer and broadcaster. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Riz on May 2, 2010, 23:07 GMT

    Another pathetic performance by Pak against Aus. They cannot get monket off their back. I am shocked how horrible our bowlers looked, and lack of guidance from a bowling coach in Waqar. He needs to show he is making a difference or else he'll be yet another casualty in Pak coaching lineup, and we'll have to revert back to Mushtaq or Miandad. Hope Afridi learnt his lesson not to bowl Hafeez. What is the point of having Razzaq and Fawad in the team if they are not bowling and coming at number 7 and 8?

  • Sameer frm Kashmir on April 29, 2010, 3:10 GMT

    Afridi is a real sensation for PAK.We can win the T20 title yet again.But need to be positive and aggresive.Razzak,ajmal,aamir,hafeez,akmals,asif,fawad will be the key.

  • Brigadier Mir Ijaz Mahmood SJ FF on April 23, 2010, 14:14 GMT

    Dear Abbasi, Your article makes a lot of sense; and unlike most of your countrymen you wrote reasonable English! Afridi is by far the most talented cricketer of the last decade & a half. He could have been another Collie Smith but could never bear out his potential because of his personal lack of thought and the utter inanity of Mujib, Zia, Ashraf & the present clown. He should have been given a full-time councellor, a supply of ice-packs and automatic selection in all three forms of the game. He has sat out matches and tours for mediocrities and nonentities. His test batting average is just short of 40 and he has not played in a test for ages ! Even in ODIs & Twenty/20 he has made a veritable comeback by sheer raw talent. If the PCB had been even averagely intelligent and reasonably objective, by now Afridi would have had an average of 45 (at a match-winning strike rate) 250 test wickets and infinitely better ODI figures. He is the only ATHLETE in the Pakistani cricket firmament.

  • Nawaz on April 19, 2010, 13:01 GMT

    plz comon shoaib akhtar in aus series. and I am not happy of PCB because why choose khalid latif in pakistan T20 team .

  • Kamil on April 19, 2010, 12:15 GMT

    Shahid Afridi has been playing with the living legends of cricket, to name a few Inzamam Ul-Haq, Mohammad Yousof and Wasim Akram. Shahid has gone through different leadership and he has confronted with ups and downs of Pakistan cricket. He is at least for now, the only suitable candidate to fill up the captaincy slot for Pakistan. Cricket is no doubt a funny game, but Pakistan being the power house of cricket should not whining about the past. Pakistan must "clean up" its internal problems and moving forward to rehabilitate the team which has lost its shine. Pakistan is no short of talents but it is lack of consistency. Lets hope for Shahid Afridi and his team success in the upcoming tournament.

  • khalid on April 9, 2010, 3:45 GMT

    afidi is a great motivative personality in his captionship pakistan will win insha allah

  • Mohammad Aslam Kuwait. on April 7, 2010, 10:40 GMT

    I feel first time PCB( Not Butt) has done something good for cricket of appointing Afridi as a captain of T20.Butt must be taken off from PCB if you want to see Pakistan cricket team on winning stand.Is it due to Mohsin Khan?So Imran should take over from Butt it is high time.Afridi must be made captain for ODI also upto world cup 2011. Yousuf and Younus must be brought for test cricket otherwise there is no difference between Pakistan test cricket and Zimbabwe test cricket.Our coach should work hard only on fielding and catching practice otherwise with big score or taking wicket earlier will not win you the match.Afridi should paly through out his life,like he played in t20 semi and final and NO BOOM BOOM FOR THE SAKE OF PAKISTAN.I request Amar to bowl good line and length even at slow speed to get more wickets and not widesssss.Good luck for T20 and world cup.PAKISTAN ZINDABAD...........

  • Mohammad Asad on April 6, 2010, 14:36 GMT

    At present situation, Afridi is the only one who is capable to lead the team. Now he is very much matured. Good luck for him and PAK team... By the way.......Is Khaled Latif is a T20 format player ???

    Mohammad Asad from USA.

  • Fazil Ahamed, India on March 29, 2010, 14:04 GMT

    Masha Allah. Nice post. I totally agree with you Mr.Kamran. Afridi is the best choice. He is a great allrounder in all the three formats. He is the best choice for captaining the Pakistan Cricket.

    Insha Allah, he will win this World Cup.

  • Amran Yousaf on March 29, 2010, 0:10 GMT

    Osman bhai,another top article. I said before the last T20 that we needed to make Pakistan proud,we won,Afridi got us there along with Umar Gul. Since then Pakistan has gone downhill,our cricket,hockey and squash teams have floundrered. Only our military has given us something to smile about with our jawans restoring some semblance of order to our beloved country and hopefully one day bringing cricket back to Pakistan. What we need now is our teams to show the same pride,commitment and patriotism and fight that our military has shown. These pampered superstars need to know that wearing the Pakistan shirt is the pinnacle of your life not just a path to money. Maybe they should swap their shirts with our jawans bullet proof vests? Then they may realise how lucky they are. Afridi is the only man who can have the effect on the team that General Kayani has on our jawans, Lets see if our pampered superstars can respond in the same way. Despite everything I love my Pakistan

  • Riz on May 2, 2010, 23:07 GMT

    Another pathetic performance by Pak against Aus. They cannot get monket off their back. I am shocked how horrible our bowlers looked, and lack of guidance from a bowling coach in Waqar. He needs to show he is making a difference or else he'll be yet another casualty in Pak coaching lineup, and we'll have to revert back to Mushtaq or Miandad. Hope Afridi learnt his lesson not to bowl Hafeez. What is the point of having Razzaq and Fawad in the team if they are not bowling and coming at number 7 and 8?

  • Sameer frm Kashmir on April 29, 2010, 3:10 GMT

    Afridi is a real sensation for PAK.We can win the T20 title yet again.But need to be positive and aggresive.Razzak,ajmal,aamir,hafeez,akmals,asif,fawad will be the key.

  • Brigadier Mir Ijaz Mahmood SJ FF on April 23, 2010, 14:14 GMT

    Dear Abbasi, Your article makes a lot of sense; and unlike most of your countrymen you wrote reasonable English! Afridi is by far the most talented cricketer of the last decade & a half. He could have been another Collie Smith but could never bear out his potential because of his personal lack of thought and the utter inanity of Mujib, Zia, Ashraf & the present clown. He should have been given a full-time councellor, a supply of ice-packs and automatic selection in all three forms of the game. He has sat out matches and tours for mediocrities and nonentities. His test batting average is just short of 40 and he has not played in a test for ages ! Even in ODIs & Twenty/20 he has made a veritable comeback by sheer raw talent. If the PCB had been even averagely intelligent and reasonably objective, by now Afridi would have had an average of 45 (at a match-winning strike rate) 250 test wickets and infinitely better ODI figures. He is the only ATHLETE in the Pakistani cricket firmament.

  • Nawaz on April 19, 2010, 13:01 GMT

    plz comon shoaib akhtar in aus series. and I am not happy of PCB because why choose khalid latif in pakistan T20 team .

  • Kamil on April 19, 2010, 12:15 GMT

    Shahid Afridi has been playing with the living legends of cricket, to name a few Inzamam Ul-Haq, Mohammad Yousof and Wasim Akram. Shahid has gone through different leadership and he has confronted with ups and downs of Pakistan cricket. He is at least for now, the only suitable candidate to fill up the captaincy slot for Pakistan. Cricket is no doubt a funny game, but Pakistan being the power house of cricket should not whining about the past. Pakistan must "clean up" its internal problems and moving forward to rehabilitate the team which has lost its shine. Pakistan is no short of talents but it is lack of consistency. Lets hope for Shahid Afridi and his team success in the upcoming tournament.

  • khalid on April 9, 2010, 3:45 GMT

    afidi is a great motivative personality in his captionship pakistan will win insha allah

  • Mohammad Aslam Kuwait. on April 7, 2010, 10:40 GMT

    I feel first time PCB( Not Butt) has done something good for cricket of appointing Afridi as a captain of T20.Butt must be taken off from PCB if you want to see Pakistan cricket team on winning stand.Is it due to Mohsin Khan?So Imran should take over from Butt it is high time.Afridi must be made captain for ODI also upto world cup 2011. Yousuf and Younus must be brought for test cricket otherwise there is no difference between Pakistan test cricket and Zimbabwe test cricket.Our coach should work hard only on fielding and catching practice otherwise with big score or taking wicket earlier will not win you the match.Afridi should paly through out his life,like he played in t20 semi and final and NO BOOM BOOM FOR THE SAKE OF PAKISTAN.I request Amar to bowl good line and length even at slow speed to get more wickets and not widesssss.Good luck for T20 and world cup.PAKISTAN ZINDABAD...........

  • Mohammad Asad on April 6, 2010, 14:36 GMT

    At present situation, Afridi is the only one who is capable to lead the team. Now he is very much matured. Good luck for him and PAK team... By the way.......Is Khaled Latif is a T20 format player ???

    Mohammad Asad from USA.

  • Fazil Ahamed, India on March 29, 2010, 14:04 GMT

    Masha Allah. Nice post. I totally agree with you Mr.Kamran. Afridi is the best choice. He is a great allrounder in all the three formats. He is the best choice for captaining the Pakistan Cricket.

    Insha Allah, he will win this World Cup.

  • Amran Yousaf on March 29, 2010, 0:10 GMT

    Osman bhai,another top article. I said before the last T20 that we needed to make Pakistan proud,we won,Afridi got us there along with Umar Gul. Since then Pakistan has gone downhill,our cricket,hockey and squash teams have floundrered. Only our military has given us something to smile about with our jawans restoring some semblance of order to our beloved country and hopefully one day bringing cricket back to Pakistan. What we need now is our teams to show the same pride,commitment and patriotism and fight that our military has shown. These pampered superstars need to know that wearing the Pakistan shirt is the pinnacle of your life not just a path to money. Maybe they should swap their shirts with our jawans bullet proof vests? Then they may realise how lucky they are. Afridi is the only man who can have the effect on the team that General Kayani has on our jawans, Lets see if our pampered superstars can respond in the same way. Despite everything I love my Pakistan

  • Zainab Khan (Sydney) on March 28, 2010, 22:36 GMT

    Amongst the mess team Pakistan has been in for some time now, when players like Malik were captain once what's wrong Afridi being one.

    True his nature is an unpredictable one, but let's all have some hope and let's try to have another fresh start, rise and fall comes with every team.

    At least Afridi has the potential to control the boys. Keep good hopes for T20 !

  • Rashid on March 28, 2010, 7:24 GMT

    You need more than a simple human to be good a captain for Pakistan, since you have to have guts to go against all the criminals to bring success for your nation.Pak board will try to find a excuse to ruin.Yousuf should play for Afghanistan they will value him and I believe his service will be appreciated and they will not be ungrateful. Once there was Imran,could have been Younus and now Inshallah will be Afridi.

  • Omar Hussain on March 27, 2010, 13:19 GMT

    I thought he had been puinshed enough by the international cricket board just like any other cricketers so now that he is captain Afridi has the chance to show his worth.Younis and Yousaf should fight their bans but it is not advisable for them to return to cricket.Rather they should seriously consider some other career now because they have been insulted beyond repair..Pakistan stands by for a mauling from Australia and England but i wouldn't be surprised if our new boys put up a spirited front.Let's hope the daring of youth together with the natural defiance inherent in the Pathan Afridi brings out the best in our team.We welcome the new lads and pray to Allah to give them strength of purpose and national pride.Over to you Mr. Afridi!

  • salmanJa on March 27, 2010, 0:52 GMT

    Afridi is nothing short of a disgrace to world cricket, cricketing ability is not denied but he is definitely not the candidate to captain his country after his recent shamefull behaviour, I akin it to making Bin Laden the president of Pakistan ?? Is the country so desperate to win ?? play the game with gentleman and come back without a trophy but bring honour to our country.

  • AtishG on March 26, 2010, 16:57 GMT

    Responsibility sometimes does bring maturity. We have seen maturity in Afridi's play in the last T20 World Cup, so he's capable of it. Last time around, the responsibilty of being the leading all-rounder in the team probably kick-started his performance. Captaincy may do the same in this World Cup. I really do hope so. Because Afridi on song does more than win matches. He inspires his team to believe all is possible. And he makes the game worth watching.

  • drmqislam on March 26, 2010, 16:34 GMT

    Afridi is the best choice as a motivator and leader to captain but he is not the best man to command respect from the umpires and international community which are very important to be successful in the matches. Umpires play a big role, see the test last between Bangladesh and England. Two umpires played with the British team to defeat Bangladesh. They can be so naked. Afridi will not get much sympathy from any corner. PCB should have considered Razzaque, a good cricketer and a gentleman who deserves to lead the team to improve the image of Pakistan team worldwide. I see very little chance for Afridi and Co to play the final of T20 next month.

  • mateen abbasi on March 26, 2010, 14:43 GMT

    afridi is the only player who has the ability to defend t20 trophy.thanks GOD finally the PCB has done something to appreciate.on contrary how in such an important event selection is not done by captain and coach.some test palyers are also included in T20 format like salman butt and khalid latif.why not included imran nazir?despite the fact that these openers fail everytime and cannot even stand on pitch for a while they are part of t20 squad

  • Adnan on March 26, 2010, 10:03 GMT

    i can understand the ignorant fans cheering for afridi but i cant expect you mr. abbasi as a knowledgable person to actually support the appointment of afridi. the guy has been aroung for 15 years and he actually decided to taste the leather off of a ball in the middle of a match which he is captaining?? and if this wasnt proof enough of him being a pathan, he is now appealing against the fine imposed on him? for fuck sake, wht the fuck?? n i thought the spineless half wit PCB @#$!s had put him and akmal brothers on probation and during these 6 months, he wont be considewred as a captain then wht the hell is going on here. it was a perfect chance to actually appoint someone with a cricket sense as captain. SALMAN BUTT.anyway i guess no point trying to talk sense now. best just pray bangladesh doesnt cum tour pak i dont think i cud take it, that we r the first nation bangladesh beats to win a test match.God Help US!!!!

  • Asghar Ismail on March 26, 2010, 9:19 GMT

    i realy dont understand y the people are repeating same thing over n over again. yes we know afridi did bite the ball. it was all in news. for god sake stop crying on the past. lets out team focus on present.I think since ijaz butt tookover this is the only sensible decision that PCB has made. Afridi will Inshallah bring T20 world cup for us.

  • Muhammad Rashid Rasool on March 26, 2010, 7:54 GMT

    It is unacceptable. He might be aggressive, which is, no doubt, the need of the hour, but why do we put in-competitive, unreliable and unethical persons in command. Don't we have any better solutions to come up with or we have made our minds to accept that we don't have the courage to face the challenges and we are not talented enough to deal with the situations like this. The people, we have tested already, take the charge and we ask ourselves to be positive. I am afraid it is something shameful. The Nations don't act like this. There must be no compromise over our dignity. The sad thing is that people welcome the decisions just because they like it. aaaaah Oh ALLAH please bless us with wisdom..... Amin

  • Die hard paki fan on March 26, 2010, 6:25 GMT

    I read all da comments here n in da article of osman also n i c da whole country is shouting out 1 thing and dat is "KICK OUT SALMAN BUTT, MISBAH AND ARAFAT(all 3 complet waste in any form of cricket game) N BRING IMRAN NAZIR, SHAHZAIB N SAMI" I just hope mohsin khan is listening

  • Paddle_Sweep on March 26, 2010, 5:44 GMT

    Somebody does a ball tampering and you appoint him as captain.Yeah,great reward and a model for youngsters.All wise young people - start biting the ball if you want to get captaincy or retain captaincy.

  • Thakur Baldev Singh Chauhan on March 26, 2010, 3:33 GMT

    He should be banned for life for bringing cricket to disrepute. To award him with the captaincy is pure bull. His boom boom batting was something special in last decade but I can now name 20 Indian players who play bigger shots and score double the runs, Afridi will ever do. In the mirage for a captain Imran light the Paki management keeps repeating the same mistake over and over again.

  • T Q on March 26, 2010, 3:03 GMT

    Afridi is the only man who can lead Pakistan right now. Not just in T20's and ODIs but also in Tests. He has matured enough to earn a spot in the Test team. Younis and Yousuf should be allowed BUT ONLY FOR THE TEST TEAM because their experience is needed to help the likes of Umar Akmal and Fawad Alam. Imran Khan should use his politics and take over as in charge of PCB. He is the perfect man to solve the issues in Pakistan cricket. Also Inzamam should also be involved maybe as an assistant to Waqar because both him and Waqar are popular with the current team. This should be the Pakistan player pool to select from. All 3 formats) Afridi(c),Razzaq,Akmal Bros,Fawad Alam,Aamer,Asif,Gul,Ajmal. Test Only: Yousuf,Younis,Kaneria,Imran Farhat, Khalid Latif, Sarfraz Ahmed ODI & Test Only: Salman Butt, Misbah Ul Haq T20 Only: Imran Nazir

  • Roy on March 26, 2010, 2:30 GMT

    Afridi's recent antics in Australia were,to put it mildly,most disgraceful. Pakistan is scraping the bottom of the barrel here in nominating this man captain. He will only bring more shame to his country.

  • Many Fingers Crossed on March 26, 2010, 1:15 GMT

    Many Fingers Crossed during recent weeks, finally PCB took 2 bold steps........1. Banning/Fining/Warning players of misconduct 2. Appointing AFRIDI as Captain but they are job is half done till they appoint him for all formats at least till 2011 World Cup

    Looks to be a good new combination for PAK WAQAR,IJAJ,AFRIDI where these 3 want to perform well...thats important. Lets hope this team is not disturbed.

    Can't wait to see PAK taking cup again

  • Mudassar on March 25, 2010, 23:37 GMT

    I think the team played last T20 WC would be perfect with Hafeez instead of Malik, Hafeez is playing better then Malik and Pakistan has better opener then Butt. As far as captain, Afridi can do anything to win we all have seen that, he has learnt his lesson and hopefully will be best captain in future

  • Sefal Khan on March 25, 2010, 23:00 GMT

    "the Age of Mr Boom Boom will be compulsive viewing" - may be, but we will be watching Pakistan team not Afridi. PCB has given us no choice but to put up with Afridi. A cheat is always a cheat. Afridi has cheated more than once. If you follow Afridi - every loosing team should resort to cheating, resulting in a winner and a cheater not the old fashion winner and a looser. Sorry Kamran - I cannot agree with you on this one. I have been a fan of Afridi for a long time - forgot Faisalabad and kept on being a fan of him but cannot forget the ball biting. He has put Pakistan to shame.

  • hoshnaew on March 25, 2010, 22:16 GMT

    The message sent out to world is exactly what the image of the country is today. Indulge in wrongdoing hate mischief in all spheres of life and become a hero in the country.

  • desihungama on March 25, 2010, 21:31 GMT

    It's a shame that we can only excel as far as the 20th over or else we could've been a true champion.

  • Dr. Saira Khan on March 25, 2010, 20:31 GMT

    Listen, if Zardari can lead the counrty why not Afridi... both are cronic cheaters, and we love to have "CHEATER" our leader...and that is main reason why do not have any respect as a Pakistani.

  • rb on March 25, 2010, 20:26 GMT

    It does not matter who is the captain of Pakistan. All of them clowns disguised as cricketers

  • maudud ahmed on March 25, 2010, 18:44 GMT

    I am really appreciate that afridi role as a captain up coming t20.But i cant accept alam in t20 format and where is nazir ?

  • Hassan Farooqi on March 25, 2010, 18:27 GMT

    Justice at last. Mr. Jamshed Dasti declared Younis Khan a cheater, stripped him of captaincy, and ended his career by alleging match fixing. Now the same Mr. Jamshed Dasti is declared cheater, forced to resign from parliament, and is not at the end of his political career. The court ruled the M.A. degree he submitted as proof of education was fake, and so was his madrissa certificate. To add insult to injury, Mr. Dasti failed to answer the simplest Islamic question by the judge, "What is the first chapter of Quran". As a plain diploma holder of Bible (not an M.A.), I can tell the first book of Old Testament is Genesis and the first book of New Testament is John ... and I am not even a Christian. Shame Mr. Dasti, shame.

  • Dr.Iyer on March 25, 2010, 15:32 GMT

    The test comes only in England summer. T20 is anybody's game. But once you play in test with Lineup Butt, Farhat, Kamal/Alam, Kamal, Umar, Afridi, Keeper, Gul/Razak, Aamer, Asif, Ajmal - bowling is decent but batting? My goodness Bangladesh can be better. Though disciplinie vise bans are needed, it has bled Pakistan's experience in Younis, Yousuf and Malik.

  • Dr.Iyer on March 25, 2010, 15:26 GMT

    Well finally one sensible decision by PCB. Afridi is hope for Pakistan. But really he has to stay with cool head. They need him to play sensibly like T20 WC final and Semifinal 09 and not like T20 07.

  • Faisal on March 25, 2010, 15:24 GMT

    All i have to say is that Afridi is the perfect answer to the mess of Pak cricket. Afridi is the only answer at this time in any format of the game. Regardless of how dynamic he is or what he does..The whole mumbo jumbo that PCB has made out of cricket, only Afridi is the "key" to counter it. He can lead, he can unite, and most of all he can win for Pakistan.

    Good Luck to Afridi and Pakistan team, i am very confident that Pakistan Team will Defend T20 title Inshallah.

  • oops on March 25, 2010, 12:58 GMT

    loved (mostly) but also hated (by the moralizers of this world and those who want to see pakistan more down than up), AFRIDI never shied away from a scrap. he is certainly no angel.

    But, he is the uncrowned King of Pakistan.

    All Hail The King! Long Live The King!

  • drmqislam on March 25, 2010, 10:40 GMT

    Pakistan has fascinated world cricket at times but lacks discipline and consistency over the years. With India and Auatralia at peak in forms and discipline, I do not think Pakistan has much chance of success. Do not forget the awful fielding specially,with Kamran behind the stump.

    Good luck to Young Pakistan team.

  • Asif Ali Jaan on March 25, 2010, 9:16 GMT

    Shahif Afridi is the last Hope for Pakistan Today.He Is Very Strong on The Field and Most Importent i Think he is Fighting Crickter and Naturaly Telent and he know very well What going on Now. My Prayers is Going to Boom Boom Afridi . I Love Him to Play as a Captin for Pakistan Team. and also Abdul Razzak is my Fav Palyer. Boom Boom Zinda Bad and God Bless u

  • muhammad on March 25, 2010, 8:58 GMT

    Kamran, you forgot to mention a number of match winning 50's and couple of other match winning 100's. We all know that when when afridi performs, we are certain to win.

  • Adnan on March 25, 2010, 8:23 GMT

    I have seen the passion in Pakistan team, yet all of them to unleash thier powers. Afridi being implusive can help Pakistan grow only if the team and management is ready to follow him. I was sure Afridi would become captain as the board did not want as you mentioned another "POWERPLAY" at the players. I think its a plot to calm things down for T20 world cup and analyse what needs to be done further for Pakistan Cricket.

  • Anwar on March 25, 2010, 8:10 GMT

    Hi!!!!!, Now i am very excited to see Afridi as a captain in T20 World Cup. Good Decesion taken by PCB, HE has a guts to lead the team and Team Mates Love him...The main thing is that the whole nations love him, Hope he will do well again in this world cup...... . I dont know wot Khalid Latif is doing there , Where is Nazir?....

  • Romaan on March 25, 2010, 7:12 GMT

    I think Shahid Khan Afridi is the best choice. He could be a great captain; he has everything a captain needs. I hope he'll be the captain in all the 3 formats.

    @ muhammed hafeez deserves a chance he's in good form

    but why in godsname did they bring butt?? he's the worst opener ever(for 20/20)

  • Jamil on March 25, 2010, 7:12 GMT

    seems like Mr Abbassi is forcing an optimism into the readers. But I would rather like to read a more direct and controversial narration of affairs. I would rather choose Umar Akmal as captain than a repeated offender like Afridi. He yells, insults, backstabs, fights, insults the entire nations, brings disgust to the game - and provides entertainment!! He was the guy who could stand up and say that I have always stood by Mr YK and will do even now. He was one of the players (literally) who created the issue including his backstabbing meeting with PCB management ahead of YK. His character is as pathetic as his batting. He didn't bring the T20 match, it was YK who knew what to do at the right moment. But then, this article is the writer's point of view - disappointing but his own.

  • Swami on March 25, 2010, 6:51 GMT

    The question to ask is .. would a player humiliated in front of the world for ball tampering have been appointed for the prestigious job of national team captain in any other country ? What message does it send to rest of the world.

  • Gohar on March 25, 2010, 6:50 GMT

    @ Jawed saleem! well this is true that their isn't any choice other than Afridi, but what u wrote that"BANN him for life time" that is not justified. Well if that was a very serious offence then WHY ICC not penalised him hard? i open the pandora box of Ball tempering than aalmost 90% of current and previous fast bowlers will be banned.

  • zaheer on March 25, 2010, 6:34 GMT

    itc gud to c back afridi leading the Pak Team.

  • Anand Desai on March 25, 2010, 5:50 GMT

    Hi,Afridi is the only option Pakistan have right now when it comes to captaincy.It may work wonders for Pakistan when it comes to T20 or may be ODI but i am little sceptic about him in Test as a captain . Test Match captain should be appointed after you select a team. So he first need to get qualify to get selected as a test batsman and he has to be sure about his place in Test side . Though i am not sure on Pakistan domestic stars so i am not sure whether there is anyone who is technically more qualified to lead Pakistan in Test . If Afridi can make in to Test Side then i think Pakistan Administration clearly needs to look at their domestic structure and their coaching methodologies becz then its a concern . But i bet for Afridi as captain for T20 and ODI.Further i hardly see any effect of Afridi's Captaincy (remember First T20 world cup they were runners up under Malik's Captaincy & Last World cup Winner under Younis Khan)in T20 Format.They are a decent team in T20 format.

  • khalil on March 25, 2010, 4:11 GMT

    Pak cricket & uncertainity cannot be separated from each other. Afridi is the best option in this version of the game. On the one hand, he can create controversies but at the same time he seems mature enough to handle them. I wouldnot consider him as captain for tests but if he can cotrol his stunts of discipline,probably he is the man,who can deliver in short format of the game as captain for Pak. Give him a run as captain in ODI,s & T20 cricket. Selectors are wholly resposible for the failures of Afridi in the past. A player,who is selected as abowler in the team & by default produced the fastest ODI 100 in the history of cricket,is asked to open the inning for Pak for half a period of his carrier. How can you expect from him to deliver on 2 fronts persistently. Anyways,best of luck to Aridi & Pak.

  • Yousuf Zaman on March 25, 2010, 4:06 GMT

    Maybe PCB could not find an alternate, as they were not willing to take chance with Razzaq. My main concern is the team selection . unimpressive Arafat is in team and Sami is missing.We might see the old story ,another injury problem to Arafat and then Sami as replacement .

  • Muhammed on March 24, 2010, 22:34 GMT

    I have been a die hard fan of pakistaan even though i hail from south africa..pakistan cricket is a shame and will remain a shame as long as they have corrupted leaders like ijaz butt and co at the helm..also how can they appoint a captain who doesnt have the authority of picking the team.even waqar wasnt involved in the composition of the team..soo y have a captain and coach?khalid latif?is he a twent twenty player?hafeez has had many oppurtunities and is a failure..bring hasan raza back and yassir hameed.they deserve the chance more then anyone else.

  • Jawed Saleem on March 24, 2010, 22:15 GMT

    Catch - 22 Situ ! Mr. Abbasi, in present scenario, there is no other choice. After what transpired down-under, Afridi should have been banned for life (a/w Rana & Asif – being priv’y to Afridi’s act). Due pathetic situation of governance in our country and (weird) state of affairs of PCB, most of Pakistanis will agree/tolerate his appointment as captain. I strongly support the PCB’s recent action to curb the “PLAYER’s POWER” (Though I still feel that Afridi’s appointment is also the result of PLAYER’s POWER). Due to fragmentation/grouping (among team), Pak cric. fans should brace for adverse results from WI - T/20 cup. The culprits will engineer another "DEBACLE" ! Jawed, Karachi

  • Saiful Ansari, Leesburg VA USA on March 24, 2010, 21:47 GMT

    After the recent events leading up to punishments inflicted on several prominent members of the team including Afridi, it will take a giant leap for Pakistan to retain the T20 Championship. The senior members who survived the wrath of Ijaz Butt & his PCB must be shaken and the young guys will need direction. The fans hope by a miracle, the new skipper Afridi & Coach Waqar Yunus can forge unity in the team and motivate them to bring their A game to the forthcoming World Cup matches. The boys need to fight and hold firm in the absence of some key players in defence of their title. Another championship win will not only establish the dominace of Pakistan in T20 form of cricket, it will also bring smiles on the faces of their numerous die hard fans at home and all over the world.

  • jishah on March 24, 2010, 18:51 GMT

    I agree wholeheartedly but besides Afridi, we do not really have anyone else on the team right now who could shoulder the burden. I followed some domestic matches and also would suggest that in Mohammed Hafeez I see a true replacement for Shoaib Malik.

    If Afridi suceeds (I hope), the two YoYos should come back in the team and Younis/Afridi combo will be perfect for test and shorter format leadership.

    Yousuf should understand that seniority does not translate to captaincy. There is a reason that in corporate world CEO as not usually the oldest most senior employee of the firm.

    Yousuf should focus on his batting prowess. Younis has a confidence problem and I do not know what to do with that but it seemed to be directly correlated to the captaincy. He was doing fine before that.

    Hope and looking forward to T20.

    -jishah

  • M. Alam on March 24, 2010, 16:31 GMT

    I fully agree with you Kamran. He has the will to lead and win. He is aggressive cricketer and that is what is demanded now-a-days in T20 and one day cricket. Pakistan team have to come out of their box (playing safe), and play their natural game by giving their 100% with a strong will to win. I think Afridi character truly showcase this fact. Pakistan is good in T20 cricket because in a short game most of the time talent overcome shortcoming in planning (rightly demonstrated by Pakistan team in last T20 world cup against South Africa and Sri Lanka) and you have rightly said a tactical genius is welcomed by may not be essential at this moment.

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  • M. Alam on March 24, 2010, 16:31 GMT

    I fully agree with you Kamran. He has the will to lead and win. He is aggressive cricketer and that is what is demanded now-a-days in T20 and one day cricket. Pakistan team have to come out of their box (playing safe), and play their natural game by giving their 100% with a strong will to win. I think Afridi character truly showcase this fact. Pakistan is good in T20 cricket because in a short game most of the time talent overcome shortcoming in planning (rightly demonstrated by Pakistan team in last T20 world cup against South Africa and Sri Lanka) and you have rightly said a tactical genius is welcomed by may not be essential at this moment.

  • jishah on March 24, 2010, 18:51 GMT

    I agree wholeheartedly but besides Afridi, we do not really have anyone else on the team right now who could shoulder the burden. I followed some domestic matches and also would suggest that in Mohammed Hafeez I see a true replacement for Shoaib Malik.

    If Afridi suceeds (I hope), the two YoYos should come back in the team and Younis/Afridi combo will be perfect for test and shorter format leadership.

    Yousuf should understand that seniority does not translate to captaincy. There is a reason that in corporate world CEO as not usually the oldest most senior employee of the firm.

    Yousuf should focus on his batting prowess. Younis has a confidence problem and I do not know what to do with that but it seemed to be directly correlated to the captaincy. He was doing fine before that.

    Hope and looking forward to T20.

    -jishah

  • Saiful Ansari, Leesburg VA USA on March 24, 2010, 21:47 GMT

    After the recent events leading up to punishments inflicted on several prominent members of the team including Afridi, it will take a giant leap for Pakistan to retain the T20 Championship. The senior members who survived the wrath of Ijaz Butt & his PCB must be shaken and the young guys will need direction. The fans hope by a miracle, the new skipper Afridi & Coach Waqar Yunus can forge unity in the team and motivate them to bring their A game to the forthcoming World Cup matches. The boys need to fight and hold firm in the absence of some key players in defence of their title. Another championship win will not only establish the dominace of Pakistan in T20 form of cricket, it will also bring smiles on the faces of their numerous die hard fans at home and all over the world.

  • Jawed Saleem on March 24, 2010, 22:15 GMT

    Catch - 22 Situ ! Mr. Abbasi, in present scenario, there is no other choice. After what transpired down-under, Afridi should have been banned for life (a/w Rana & Asif – being priv’y to Afridi’s act). Due pathetic situation of governance in our country and (weird) state of affairs of PCB, most of Pakistanis will agree/tolerate his appointment as captain. I strongly support the PCB’s recent action to curb the “PLAYER’s POWER” (Though I still feel that Afridi’s appointment is also the result of PLAYER’s POWER). Due to fragmentation/grouping (among team), Pak cric. fans should brace for adverse results from WI - T/20 cup. The culprits will engineer another "DEBACLE" ! Jawed, Karachi

  • Muhammed on March 24, 2010, 22:34 GMT

    I have been a die hard fan of pakistaan even though i hail from south africa..pakistan cricket is a shame and will remain a shame as long as they have corrupted leaders like ijaz butt and co at the helm..also how can they appoint a captain who doesnt have the authority of picking the team.even waqar wasnt involved in the composition of the team..soo y have a captain and coach?khalid latif?is he a twent twenty player?hafeez has had many oppurtunities and is a failure..bring hasan raza back and yassir hameed.they deserve the chance more then anyone else.

  • Yousuf Zaman on March 25, 2010, 4:06 GMT

    Maybe PCB could not find an alternate, as they were not willing to take chance with Razzaq. My main concern is the team selection . unimpressive Arafat is in team and Sami is missing.We might see the old story ,another injury problem to Arafat and then Sami as replacement .

  • khalil on March 25, 2010, 4:11 GMT

    Pak cricket & uncertainity cannot be separated from each other. Afridi is the best option in this version of the game. On the one hand, he can create controversies but at the same time he seems mature enough to handle them. I wouldnot consider him as captain for tests but if he can cotrol his stunts of discipline,probably he is the man,who can deliver in short format of the game as captain for Pak. Give him a run as captain in ODI,s & T20 cricket. Selectors are wholly resposible for the failures of Afridi in the past. A player,who is selected as abowler in the team & by default produced the fastest ODI 100 in the history of cricket,is asked to open the inning for Pak for half a period of his carrier. How can you expect from him to deliver on 2 fronts persistently. Anyways,best of luck to Aridi & Pak.

  • Anand Desai on March 25, 2010, 5:50 GMT

    Hi,Afridi is the only option Pakistan have right now when it comes to captaincy.It may work wonders for Pakistan when it comes to T20 or may be ODI but i am little sceptic about him in Test as a captain . Test Match captain should be appointed after you select a team. So he first need to get qualify to get selected as a test batsman and he has to be sure about his place in Test side . Though i am not sure on Pakistan domestic stars so i am not sure whether there is anyone who is technically more qualified to lead Pakistan in Test . If Afridi can make in to Test Side then i think Pakistan Administration clearly needs to look at their domestic structure and their coaching methodologies becz then its a concern . But i bet for Afridi as captain for T20 and ODI.Further i hardly see any effect of Afridi's Captaincy (remember First T20 world cup they were runners up under Malik's Captaincy & Last World cup Winner under Younis Khan)in T20 Format.They are a decent team in T20 format.

  • zaheer on March 25, 2010, 6:34 GMT

    itc gud to c back afridi leading the Pak Team.

  • Gohar on March 25, 2010, 6:50 GMT

    @ Jawed saleem! well this is true that their isn't any choice other than Afridi, but what u wrote that"BANN him for life time" that is not justified. Well if that was a very serious offence then WHY ICC not penalised him hard? i open the pandora box of Ball tempering than aalmost 90% of current and previous fast bowlers will be banned.