The disagreements in Pakistan Cricket Team | ThinkEd

The disagreements in Pakistan Cricket Team

1. Bad blood on the field

The PCB announced on Sunday that Babar Azam will lead the Pakistan team in white-ball cricket. The announcement, reported by ESPNcricinfo a few days ago, ends Shaheen Shah Afridi’s temporary stint as T20I captain. 

This reversal has many questioning the impact of this on the dynamic between the two. Remember how previously when Babar stepped down everyone was drawing their conclusions as to how this decision has caused a rift between the two? Rumors quickly escalated after Pakistan bowed out of the 2023 Asia Cup after losing to Sri Lanka in the Super 4 tournament. According to some reports, Shaheen and Babar argued in the locker room after the loss to Sri Lanka. But of course, those rumors were shut down quickly when Shaheen posted a picture of him and Babar hugging on Instagram.

Also Read: Baber Azam breaks silence on alleged dressing room spat with Shaheen

2. Why did Shaheen step down?

Babar reluctantly relinquished the captaincy after the PCB indicated its intention to appoint a replacement in November, ultimately leading to the selection of Afridi. Initially, Afridi was likely to double as ODI captain, but subsequent developments have dimmed that prospect.

For Babar, this return will probably act as rehabilitation after his abrupt exit following Pakistan’s poor performance in the World Cup. Former PCB chairman Zaka Ashraf effectively forced Babar’s resignation and urged him to state his resignation. However, the PCB’s rapid return to Babar’s leadership left him in a much stronger position.

According to reports, most of the newly appointed selection committee members supported Babar’s return. However, to assume the captaincy again, certain conditions had to be met. In discussions with the PCB, he sought assurances that he would not be arbitrarily replaced after the T20I World Cup in June and sought an extension of his tenure as captain. Furthermore, he is understood to have called for greater control over selection issues.

His short tenure as Afridi’s captain is unlikely to have boosted his morale. Signs that Naqvi’s ouster was imminent were clear after Naqvi refused to endorse him at a press conference in Lahore and suggested a final decision would be made after a military training camp in Pakistan. However, as evidenced by Pakistan’s 4-1 loss in the T20I series against New Zealand and Lahore Qalandars’ dismal performance in the PSL (just 1 win in 10 matches), Afridi Confidence in the leadership of the government appears to be rapidly disappearing. Finished at the bottom of the table. One of the reasons Afridi was initially chosen as captain despite being only 23 years old was the expectation that he would be able to learn and develop in the role over a long period. 

3. The trend of returning back

With many players rejoining the team after their retirement, you can’t help but wonder if Pakistan is running out of young blood to follow in the footsteps of the legends. Or if the youngsters simply lack the consistency required to strengthen the team. You can’t doubt the abilities of all the emerging players, but their performance seems very luck orientated. With players going down with injury after injury you can’t help but worry about their fitness and question the fitness regime they’re following. 

4. The beef in locker rooms

Differences within the locker room can have a huge impact on a team’s performance. Diverging opinions between players can create a negative environment, hinder teamwork, and impact on-field communication, coordination, and decision-making. 

Cases of disputes and disputes between Pakistani cricketers have already come to light. Let’s look at past disagreements between the two. 

Inzamam-ul-Haq and Younis Khan  

Inzamam-ul-Haq and Younis Khan were violently attacked and involved in a clash during a pre-training warm-up match for the 2003 World Cup.

Inzamam was displeased when Younis received a yellow card. Although there was no physical blow, he approached Younis aggressively. Saeed Anwar tried to intervene, but Inzamam pushed him away.  

The team’s English coach, Richard Pybus, finally intervened and accompanied both players to the locker room. 

Shoaib Akhtar and Mohammad Asif 

Known as the fastest bowler in the history of cricket, Shoaib Akhtar has often been in the limelight for both admirable and not-so-admirable reasons. 

Before the 2007 T20 World Cup, he was dropped from the squad after a surprise incident in which he hit his teammate Mohammad Asif with a bat. 

In his autobiography, Controversially Yours, Akhtar Shahid places the blame on Afridi, claiming that Afridi instigated him and that the swing of the bat intended for Afridi accidentally hit Mohammad Asif. did. 

However, Afridi denied these claims. 

This incident was not the only controversy surrounding Shoaib Akhtar, but it was a major setback for both him and Pakistan as they had to participate in their first T20 World Cup without their star fast bowler. became.

Shahid Afridi and Javed Miandad 

In 2016, a heated argument broke out between two prominent Pakistani cricketers, Javed Miandad and Shahid Afridi. 

The altercation even gave rise to rumors that underworld figure Dawood Ibrahim was related to Miandad through his marriage. 

Miandad accused Afridi of seeking a farewell match primarily for financial reasons and also claimed that he was involved in match-fixing. 

In response, Mr. Afridi denied these allegations and accused Mr. Miandad of being motivated by money and of being involved in match-fixing. 

Despite efforts at reconciliation, tensions escalated when Afridi published his autobiography, Game Changer. 

Afridi criticized Miandad in his book, calling him a “boring person”. He claimed that Miandad denied him practice time before an important match against India. 

Miandad dismissed Afridi’s claims as a ploy to boost book sales. While acknowledging the differences between the two, he denied any mistreatment of Afridi.

Wasim Akram and Shoaib Akhtar

Considering his reputation for being controversial in the cricket world, it is perhaps no surprise that Shoaib Akhtar’s name comes up many times on this list. Former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram is not immune to such controversies. 

After Shoaib Akhtar’s resignation, he and Wasim Akram had several disagreements in public. The origins of their conflict can be traced back to Shoaib’s autobiography, Controversially Yours. 

Shoaib in his book accused Wasim of playing a role in hindering his career as a cricketer and even admitted that he had concerns about Shoaib returning to the team. 

In 2011, Wasim responded by saying that Shoaib turned out to be a difficult person to deal with and hinted that Shoaib himself was responsible for his career problems. These two cricketing icons were not on friendly terms. 

Source: Pakistan cricket dressing room fights: The ugly history

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