I am dying to play for my country: Afridi

Shahid Afridi had announced his retirement in protest after PCB removed him as captain of the national one-day team AFP

Karachi: Aug 21, 2011

Former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi has confessed that he is dying to play for the national team once again.

Speaking on a show on Geo TV, Afridi also made some scathing remarks on the resignation of Waqar Younis as Pakistan team coach after the Zimbabwe tour.

“My heart bleeds to play for Pakistan and I am dying to play for my country. I even wanted to go to Zimbabwe and hopefully at the right time I will make a comeback to the team,” Afridi said.

The flamboyant allrounder announced his retirement from all international cricket in protest in late May after the Pakistan board removed him as captain of the national one-day team after a dispute with Waqar on the West Indies tour which was highly publicized.

Afridi has repeatedly said that he can make a comeback only when better people come into the team management.

Interestingly some cricket analysts point out that since Afridi’s retirement the entire team management of the national side has been changed and indications are now he will return to the team soon.

Earlier this month, the board removed Intikhab Alam as manager and also changed assistant coaches, Aaqib Javed and Shahid Aslam while Waqar announced his resignation due to personal and health reasons insisting he had no complaints against anyone and his decision was not cricket related.

But Afridi said that he failed to understand that if Waqar had resigned why he was being sent as coach on the Zimbabwe tour.

“I don’t know but I feel if he has any issues he should have faced them. He didn’t look to have health problems to me but now if that has changed I don’t know about that,” Afridi said.

The allrounder said he owed a lot to Pakistan and wanted to represent the country but retired because the environment in the team was not congenial.

“They need to bring in more sensible and good people into the team management and if that happens I will reconsider my decision to retire,” he said.

“I have been moved by the support shown to me by the people. I owe them a lot.”

The former captain said that it was unfortunate but the board had not treated players well and didn’t have proper communication with them that led to lot of problems in the team. (PTI)