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Shaheen Afridi Appointed T20I Captain, Shan Masood Takes Charge in Tests After Babar Azam’s Resignation

Leadership in Pakistani Cricket

In a surprising twist, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has named Shaheen Afridi as the new captain for Pakistan’s T20 International (T20I) team, stepping into the void left by Babar Azam’s unexpected resignation.

Babar’s Shocking Decision After World Cup Exit

The cricket world was rocked by the news of Babar Azam stepping down from the captaincy following Pakistan’s premature exit from the ICC World Cup 2023 in India. Making the announcement on social media during India’s semi-final clash with New Zealand, the former world no.1 batter cited Pakistan’s underwhelming performance in the One Day International (ODI) World Cup as the catalyst for relinquishing captaincy across all formats.

Swift Response from PCB

Responding swiftly to this unexpected development, the PCB announced Shaheen Afridi, the talented pacer, as the new captain for the Green Army in T20Is. Simultaneously, seasoned player Shan Masood, who made his Test debut in 2013, will take charge of the Test side. The official announcement from the PCB stated, “Presenting our captains @shani_official has been appointed Test captain while @iShaheenAfridi will lead the T20I side.

Shan Masood: Test Captain with Experience

With 30 Test matches under his belt, Shan Masood brings a wealth of experience to the Test captaincy role. Having scored 1597 runs at an average of 28.52 in red-ball cricket, Masood is poised to lead the Asian side in the longer format.

Shaheen Afridi: T20I Leadership and Versatility

Shaheen Shah Afridi
Shaheen Afridi: Photo credit | Instagram |

Taking the reins in T20Is, Shaheen Afridi has showcased his prowess in the shortest format with 52 appearances. Additionally, Afridi’s versatility is evident in his representation of Pakistan in 27 Tests and 53 One Day Internationals (ODIs), making him a key player across formats.

Babar Azam Reflects on Resignation

In a reflective statement, Babar Azam shared, “It’s a difficult decision but I feel it is the right time for this call.” The former captain, who led the Green Army across all formats since November 2019, expressed his dedication to continue representing Pakistan as a player in all three formats. Despite commendable achievements, including a historic win over India in the 2021 World Cup, Babar’s captaincy faced challenges in the recent Asia Cup and ICC World Cup campaigns.

Babar’s Continued Support

With the bat still in hand, Babar Azam reassured, “I am here to support the new captain and the team with my experience and dedication.” As Pakistan navigates this transition in leadership, the cricketing world eagerly anticipates the performances under the guidance of Shaheen Afridi in T20Is and Shan Masood in Test cricket.

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