KARACHI: Senior all-rounder Shahid Afridi has once again expressed his interest in captaining the Pakistan cricket team.
Afridi said that after having played 17 years for the country he always considered it as a big honour to captain the national team.
“If the Cricket Board (PCB) deems it fit and offers me the captaincy again I will accept it as a challenge,” Afridi said.
“I think the position we are facing right now is that all the senior players need to contribute more and play a more decisive role in the South Africa series,” he said.
The all-rounder was removed as captain of the Twenty20 and ODI teams in 2011 after differences with PCB and has since then not been given a chance to lead the national side again.
Afridi, who led Pakistan in the last World Cup, is said to be a top candidate to get the captaincy again of the ODI side for the forthcoming series against South Africa in the UAE after insiders hinted that the PCB had decided to relieve Misbah-ul-Haq of the duties.
“In principle it has been decided that since there is little time before the South Africa series and the Test matches are to be played before the limited over games, Misbah and Dav Whatmore will continue as captain and head coach for the Tests but Afridi will be brought in as ODI captain while Mohammad Hafeez will continue to lead the T20 outfit,” one source revealed.
Pakistan is due to play three Tests, five ODIs and two T20 games against South Africa from mid-October.
The source said that the selectors, who have been given a one month extension by the PCB, had met with the caretaker chairman of the board Najam Sethi on Tuesday in Lahore in which the South Africa series was discussed.
“Basically the selectors agreed that Misbah should be given one final chance in Tests against South Africa but it was necessary to introduce a fresh approach to the ODI outfit and Afridi`s name for the captaincy came under discussion,” he said.
He said Whatmore, who reached Lahore on Monday night after the Zimbabwe tour, was not invited for the meeting giving an indication that the PCB was not very happy with his performance with the national team since he took over as coach in March, 2012.
“But some key decisions have been taken on the selection. One thing is also clear that Hafeez is out of the Test side,” the source said.