Pakistan cricket April 3, 2014

Afridi blames negative approach for WT20 exit


Shahid Afridi has said that a negative approach from the top-order batsmen resulted in Pakistan's exit from the World T20 after they lost a knock-out league match to West Indies on Tuesday. Pakistan failed to progress to the semi-finals for the first time in the World T20.

After having dominated with the ball for 15 overs of the West Indies innings, Pakistan conceded 82 runs in the last five overs and allowed their opponents to reach 166 for 6. They floundered early in the chase, stumbling to 13 for 4 in the sixth over before being dismissed for 82. This was their second defeat in the group stage, after a loss to India in the opening game.

"It wasn't a big total which couldn't be achieved but the game slipped out of our hands in the first six overs of our batting," Afridi told reporters after returning to Karachi. "It was due to our negative approach in the first six overs, and that's the reason we lost the match.

"If you look at our bowling, we did well in the first 15 overs. Obviously it is T20 and bowlers do get hammered, but it was not such a total which couldn't be achieved. Your attack is your defense; you have to play an attacking game to achieve a positive result."

The loss has put the roles of a few senior players in the spotlight and the Pakistan Cricket Board has also suggested that it would seek accountability. The board was due to offer players an increment of 15-20% in the year's contract, but that decision may be given a second thought.

Afridi, however, defended the squad composition saying the team had the top T20 players of Pakistan.

"The players of current team are top players in Pakistan and they are the best," Afridi said. "What you need is to instill the fighting spirit in them. They performed outstandingly against Australia. Why didn't they continue the same performance?"

Afridi was Pakistan's captain for ODIs and T20s until May 2011 but was removed from the position following differences with the PCB and a few awkward public statements. Misbah-ul-Haq replaced Afridi as captain for the limited-overs formats before stepping down from the T20 captaincy in May 2012.

The loss to Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup final, followed by the exit from the World T20, has also made the side's captaincy a talking point and Afridi, who had earlier publicly backed Misbah and Mohammad Hafeez, said he is open to the idea of leading the team.

"I am ready to accept any challenge for the Pakistan team," he said. "As a player and as a captain I have no issues, but things should improve."

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Muhammad on April 10, 2014, 12:29 GMT

    @bouncer709: Talking of reliability, what did Afridi do in World Cup 2011 semi final? Not a single wicket and 19 runs and got out playing the most rash shot. It was a full toss on which he got out.

  • Naeem on April 8, 2014, 17:24 GMT

    People may not rate Chandimal as good player or captain but what a decision he made to drop himself from semi finals and finals. That's how you recognise your form and ability and place your nation and national team first. Great! Very unlike Hafeez.

  • Ata on April 7, 2014, 12:30 GMT

    @Ehtisham Aly Ehsan: so Misbah is reliable? and we relied on him in 2007 T20 WC, and he did the same thing which people often blame Afridi for.... but on crunch movement in 2009 WC Afridi proved he is more reliable than Misbah. and see what Yuvraj did to india cricket yesterday... Misbah do the same thing to Pakistan cricket every other match...... and people who always want Afridi to blast from the first ball, mostly when 3-5 overs remaining and he comes to bat, should see the example of Dhoni yesterday, who scored 4 of 7 balls, you cant go from the first ball in every match, other teams also comes to play cricket with bowlers ..... the way hafeez resigned from T20 captaincy, Misbah will also do the same thing after 2015 WC, but it will be late. .. and I have never seen in the world people judging a bowler reliability by his batting...

  • Dummy4 on April 6, 2014, 16:58 GMT

    Misbah will be a far better choice to lead Pakistan in 20 20 then Afridi. How someone who is not reliable and consistent can be a leader and manager inside the ground. It is also important to groom someone like Ahmad Shahzad for future captain....

  • Nik on April 6, 2014, 10:14 GMT

    Captaincy for Afridi has been done. He left Shoaib Akther in the World Cup semi final that shattered Umar Guls nerves and led to predicatble defeat. Predictable because Afridi kept on saying we will get to semi-finals. Only.

    A good captain, no a great captain would aim higher, win it, play his best resources and go for the kill.

    Hafeez has been a slefish captain in many matches, always opening the inning, even after being made a repeated Styen bunny. As a professor, lessons learned should be applied, but never were.

    The T20 team had too many lazy unfit players. Sharjeel look explosive with the bat, but a belly flopping whale in his feilding. Babar, Tanvir, Talha and soem extent Ajmal are all poor feilders. Even Malik and Afridi have been below par.

    The bowling has also seriously diminished this year, very sub-par standards. Time to fill the youth at T20 level now.

    Probably the best captain based on form would be Fawad followed by Shezad. U Akmal is too immature.

  • Dummy4 on April 6, 2014, 9:38 GMT

    instead of Shoaib Malik we should have trusted Abdul Razzaq...

  • Jalaluddin on April 6, 2014, 5:00 GMT

    Afridi is hungry to be captain. He is not capable nor he is a talented player. He is the player of only 2 or 4 balls. He is the cause of most defeated of Pakistan cricket team. He makes groups in the team for his own interests. I think the better choice is Misbah-ul-Haq or Abdul Razzaq.

  • Dummy4 on April 6, 2014, 0:27 GMT

    Afridi as a captain is best choice for pakistan ri8 now.. there is no second thought left. Ahmed shehzad is a young talent he might not be able to handle the team soo thats it we saw the contribution of shahid afridi in all the matches thus pcb shld take quick action

  • zaf on April 5, 2014, 22:33 GMT

    PCB should wake up now and do operation clean up. PAK TEAM cant win until they get rid from following players. 1) Shoail Tanvir 2)Bhatti 3)K. akmal 4)Shoaib Malik 5)Rehman 6)Umar Gul 7)Talha

  • sami on April 5, 2014, 9:03 GMT

    To be a captain, you don't need to be a star performer but a Leader. Today, with the available players, no one can lead the Team Pakistan better than Shahid Afridi. It was embarrassing to see the nervousness of Pakistan Captain Hafiz while he was batting against the WI team. We need a leader, who can lead with aggression and positive attitude, not players who fall for the situation.

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