Pak shouldn't beg for international series': Afridi

Published: Tuesday, August 26, 2008, 16:38 [IST]
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Shahid Afridi believes postponement of ICC Champions Trophy 2008 is clearly a major blow to Pakistan cricket.Karachi: Pakistan all-rounder Shahid Afridi has said that though the postponement of the Champions Trophy was a 'blow' to the Pakistan cricket, the PCB should stop begging for international matches to fill in for the eight-nation tournament, which was delayed due to security fears cited by Australians and other international cricketers.

He hoped that the security situation in Pakistan would improve in the coming days and that international teams will visit Pakistan in the future.

"I don't think we need to beg countries to play against especially during Ramadan. I mean we have international cricket coming up later this year and then there is the series against India (early next year)," The News quoted the all-rounder as saying.

Talking to reporters in Karachi last evening, Afridi said that it would be Ramadan during September and there was "no need to make desperate attempts" to line up international games.

Afridi is the second senior Pakistani cricketer to show disinterest in playing overseas series' during Ramadan. Earlier, batsman Mohammad Yousuf had similarly asked the PCB to allow him to take a break during Ramadan. He was granted permission by the Board.

Meanwhile, Afridi"s suggestion to PCB not to beg for international cricket series was not welcomed by the PCB.

PCB's chief operating officer Shafqat Naghmi said that if Afridi wanted to take a Ramadan break then he could inform the Board about it. "In any case we would only be preferring player to represent the national team who are fully committed to the team's cause," he said.

Naghmi added that the PCB was making efforts to confirm ample number of matches in September in a bid to fill in a gaping hole left in their future tour programme by the postponement of the Champions Trophy.

Pakistan were scheduled to host the ICC Champions Trophy from Sept 12-28 in Karachi and Lahore but the ICC was forced to shift it to October 2009 after South Africa pulled out of the eight-nation contest.


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