Former all-rounder wants PCB to seek help from former players
Former Pakistan all-rounder Shahid Afridi has advised the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to follow Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)'s lead and appoint a recently retired cricketer to groom the young talent in the country.
While speaking on former Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar’s Youtube channel, Afridi was particularly impressed with former Indian batting great Rahul Dravid’s performance with local youth teams and how it has helped build India’s bench strength.
“Rahul Dravid is coaching India’s Under-19 team and helping them with his experience. We should emulate India and make the most of our former players like Mohammad Yousaf and Younis Khan,” said Afridi. “They have recently retired and understand modern-day cricket. These players should be given the responsibility of Under-19 teams and should be asked to work with them.”
Afridi also lamented the Men in Green’s poor fielding in the ongoing 2019 International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup.
“All the teams have come fully prepared for the World Cup and have improved the standard of their cricket,” he said. “On the other hand, we are still struggling with our fielding and fitness, which has cost us dearly.”
The 39-year-old wanted Pakistan’s premier batsman Babar Azam to take more responsibility and convert his starts into big innings.
“Babar is Pakistan’s most consistent player. I want him to grow even bigger as a player like Virat Kohli and Kane Williamson,” he said. “However, he needs to play long innings, you have the example of Indian players – whenever they get a start, they go on to score 150 and 200 runs.”
Afridi also predicted India, England, Australia and New Zealand to make the semi-finals of the ongoing mega event, with India and England competing in the final at the Lord’s Cricket Ground on July 14.