The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Management Committee led by Najam Sethi on Saturday appointed former skipper Shahid Afridi as the interim head of the men’s national selection committee for the home series against New Zealand, the board announced in a statement.
According to the PCB, Abdul Razzaq and Rao Iftikhar Anjum will also be a part of the tour-specific committee, while a member of the board’s management committee, Haroon Rashid, will act as the convener.
New Zealand are set to play two Tests and three One-Day Internationals on their first tour of Pakistan in 19 years. They arrived here on Thursday and will go play the first Test at the National Stadium on Monday.
Sethi, who is heading the PCB management committee, expressed his complete confidence in the newly-formed committee, saying: “I have no doubts that despite limited time, they will make brave and bold decisions that will help us produce a strong and competitive side in the series against New Zealand.”
He praised Afridi as an “attacking cricketer” and said that his 20 years of experience in all formats with significant success had always backed and supported young talent.
“So, in our collective opinion, there is no better person than him to understand the rigours, demands and challenges of the modern-day game.”
Sethi said he was confident Afridi’s “insight and knowledge of the game will help Pakistan select the best and most deserving players, and contribute in the side’s success in the upcoming series”.
The PCB statement quoted Afridi as thanking the board for the honours. The ex-captain said he will leave no stone unturned in fulfilling the responsibility.
“We need to get back to our winning ways and I have no doubts that through meritocratic and strategic selection decisions, we will help the national side to perform strongly in the series against New Zealand and reclaim the confidence of our fans,” he added.
The former captain said he would soon convene a meeting of selectors and share his plans with reference to the upcoming matches.
Shahid Afridi has played 27 Tests, 398 ODIs and 99 T20s from 1996 to 2018 in which he amassed a total of 11,196 runs and took 541 wickets.
He also captained the national side in 83 international matches. He also played a vital role for the national team in lifting the T20 World Cup title in 2009.