Karachi, Jan 19 : Pakistan’s limited-overs captain Shahid Afridi has said he is not worried about not being named the Pakistan captain for the World Cup because it is a job he never coveted.
“I am not worried about the captaincy, it never worries me,” the Daily Times quoted Afridi, as telling reporters before leaving for New Zealand.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) did not announce the captain while naming the 15-member final squad for next month’s World Cup, which is to be jointly hosted by India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
According to a well-informed source, the decision to hold back the announcement of the captain came after chief selector Mohsin Khan met with the PCB chairman Ijaz Butt earlier in the day in Lahore, and then announced the team after consulting the other selectors.
“It is nothing but a way to give out a clear message to Afridi that he should not take captaincy for granted and remain in line with board policies,” the source said.
This decision clearly indicates that Test captain Misbah remains a strong choice to lead the one-day squad as well, after his successful run as Test skipper against South Africa and New Zealand.
Afridi, who will be part of the Pakistan team for World Cup, said that being named to play for his country was the most important thing for him.
“I have never run after the captaincy in my entire career. It is something for the cricket board to decide. If they feel I am the right man they will appoint me and if they don’t they will make someone else captain,” said Afridi, whose position looked precarious following the team’s 2-1 defeat in the Twenty20 series in New Zealand last month.
The 30-year-old, who has been criticised for his leading abilities, behaviour and attitude, said he did not feel under any undue pressure. “I am a senior professional and I know what I have to do. I have to lead the team to win the series and perform well as player,” he said.
Under Afridi’s captaincy, Pakistan will play a six-match ODI series against New Zealand, starting January 22 in Wellington.
“I know our winning the series will be very important because if we win in New Zealand it will give us a boost for the World Cup,” said Afridi. (ANI)
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