Pakistan cricket team, management beset with communication gaps: Shahid Afridi

Interim chief selector says still not happy with pitch in Karachi
<p>Shahid Afridi and Babar Azam talked abou the team combination before selection.

Shahid Afridi and Babar Azam talked abou the team combination before selection. PHOTO: AFP

The interim chief selector of Pakistan Cricket Team Shahid Afridi revealed on Monday that a yawning communication gap between the team management and the players was the biggest downside of his predecessors.

Shahid Afridi said this while during Samaa TV’s show Game, Set, Match on Monday.

During the show, he disclosed that he had spoken with skipper Babar Azam and coach Saqlain Mushtaq in detail, noting that having one-on-one discussions was critical.

He said he was in contact with many players and he learnt many issues between players and the board from them.

Afridi conceded that it was a tough job but it was impossible to please everyone.

When asked about the pitch, Shahid Afridi said he was still not satisfied with the pitch, even though he had spoken with the curators on multiple occasions and that they had repeatedly assured him that the pitch will be created as per his desires.

Despite his disappointment, Afridi said that the pitch was far better than the pitches in the first match against New Zealand and England before that.

With 309 runs scored and six wickets falling, Afridi said that he still desired more bounce from the pitch.

He hoped that the players will be able to extract the desired result from the pitch and hoped that it will go in Pakistan’s favor after changes in the team.

Afridi added that bouncy pitches were important because if Pakistani batters only play on flat pitches, they will struggle when they travel to play England, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa in their home ground.

Babar Azam’s T20 selection in doubt

The former captain disclosed that he has informed domestic players that he will no longer select players for the shortest format of the game who have a strike rate lower than 130 or 135 runs per 100 balls.

This would mean that captain Babar Azam could find himself out of the next Twenty20 squad given that he has a T20 strike rate of just 127.80 per 100 balls.

Afridi said it was important to let the kids know what we demand from them so that they can be prepared for difficult situations.

He added that Under-19 cricketers were added to the Test squad, so that they could share the dressing room with their idols and learn from them.

The interim chief selector said people will have to wait for him to produce results, as it’s a time taking process, but he will try to utilize the time and give confidence to the kids.

Shahid Afridi

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