Thursday Dec 17, 2020
Former Pakistan cricket captain Shahid Khan Afridi said on Thursday that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) should have handled fast bowler Mohammad Amir's issue in a better manner.
The swashbuckling all-rounder was sharing his thoughts on Geo News' programme Aaj Shahzeb Khanzada Kay Saath where he regretted that the row between Amir and the PCB had become public knowledge.
"I think the fault lies with both (Mohammad Amir and the PCB)," said Afridi. "However, if the elders [PCB management] had not started [the row], the youngers one would not get the chance to say anything."
Afridi wondered why Amir and the PCB management were not holding talks with one another but were talking about each other on media. "They should sit together and talk, it is an easy case," he said.
Afridi said Amir that his decision was a bit "harsh", adding that strong players accept certain decisions as challenges and up their game accordingly.
"I would like to support young players but I believe there is still T20 and One Day International cricket still left in Mohammad Amir," said the former captain.
The former captain, when asked whether Amir had made a mistake by announcing his departure from Test cricket last year despite being selected in the team, said there was nothing like playing for the national team.
"I would like to tell Amir that nothing feels quite like the pride [you feel] when playing for the star," he said. "No doubt, I think Mohammad Amir should think about this clearly and you should play league cricket but if you can, make a comeback and play for the nation."
Referring to the PCB's response to the Amir crisis, Afridi said that it "has become a big issue" and gauging from the cricket board's response, it seems as if the PCB had made its mind in future to "sideline Amir".
"It was not handled well, the PCB should have discussed its plan with Mohammad Amir," he said, adding that it would depend on some people's "character" and "how big of a hear they have" to let bygones be bygones and let Amir play for the team again.
Mohammad Amir had said earlier today that he was leaving international cricket due to "torture" and an environment created by the Pakistan team management that is "pushing him away".
In a video shared by sports journalist Shoaib Jatt, Amir had explained his reasoning for leaving cricket. “I am not going away from cricket but I am being pushed away from it,” the left-arm pacer had said, adding that an “environment” has been created for him to get “sidelined”.
The bowler had shot back at critics who have accused him of being ungrateful to the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) that had invested a lot in him, adding that he hadn't taken any shortcuts and served his sentence for being involved in the alleged spot-fixing scandal.