Afridi's return to national fold imminent

Published: Friday, October 28, 2011, 16:02 [IST]
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Afridi back to national fold imminent

Karachi, Oct 27: The return of former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi for next month's one-day series against Sri Lanka appears imminent after the flamboyant cricketer decided to come out of a self-imposed exile from the game earlier this month.

Afridi has been assured by some political figures, who supported his comeback, that he would be in the national team for the ODI series against Sri Lanka if he revoked his retirement decision, a source confirmed.

The 31-year-old had announced his retirement from in late May to protest against the Pakistan Cricket Board's decision to remove him as captain after the West Indies tour.

Afridi was also fined Rs 4.5 million by the disciplinary committee of the board for breaching the code of conduct but was given permission to play in foreign leagues.

The all-rounder, an extremely popular figure with the masses in Pakistan, announced earlier this month he was available for national selection again after President Asif Zardari appointed Zaka Ashraf as the head of the PCB in place of Ijaz Butt.

The mercurial cricketer also made it clear that he was ready to play for Pakistan again since the team management had been changed, a reference to the resignation of coach Waqar Younis after the Zimbabwe tour in September.

"Afridi is certain to make a comeback to the one-day side for the series against Sri Lanka, it was part of the deal he worked out with the political and other influential figures who were involved in his comeback," a source said.


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