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Afridi’s poor form and outburst

January 11, 2013

TEMPERAMENTAL all- rounder Shahid Afridi after his continuous poor performance in two T20 matches against India landed at Lahore airport where a senior journalist asked him a valid question: “You hit a six and a four in the second match against India but you still flopped.” A visibly frustrated Afridi rebuked the journalist in an angry tone: “Look at your age and then ask a better question.”

The irony is that this sarcastic suggestion has been given by a controversial cricketer who is notorious for damaging the pitch with his spikes and chewing the ball in international cricket matches. Although the question was nasty, it was within the norms of journalism because journalists are trained to ask such questions. It was absolutely a valid question in the background of Afridi’s continuous failure in international cricket.

After his bad performance against Sri Lanka in 2012, Afridi informed the media that he was considering his one- day international career. His performance in the ODI series against Australia was also pathetic.

Afridi returned to the pavilion without scoring a single run in the first match, while in the second he made only seven. In two matches he got one wicket only by giving 99 runs in the 20 overs.

This is not the first time Afridi has demonstrated his childish attitude in front of the media. Instead of telling journalist to see his age, Afridi needs to check his own age which is on the wrong side.

His legs don’t support him while chasing a hit from the batsman’s bat. He is regular soft target for bowlers throwing him a short- pitch ball. His reflexes have gone slow. Even he was caught out on a full toss which amazed the cricket pundits.

Long ago Afridi lost his touch and charm as a pinch-hitter who would hit lofty sixes in the middle. His modelling contracts with multinationals might have stopped him to announce his retirement. But with his continuous poor form, he has badly ruined his image. Most of his fans hoped their star to retire with dignity. It would be better if he bids adieu to limited-over cricket and concentrated on Test.

ASIF SOHAIL     Lahore