Iconic Pakistani all-rounder Shahid Afridi has announced his retirement from international cricket on Sunday. The announcement came shortly after hitting a speedy 50 playing for Peshawar Zalmi against Karachi Kings in the second edition of Pakistan Super League (PSL).
The 37-year old all-rounder had already retired from One-Day Internationals and Test Cricket. However, he has been available for T20 cricket with no major appearances during the past two years. During this time, he has also been involved in a number of controversies including one with Pakistan Cricket Board.
Start with a bang!
Shahid Afridi started an illustrious career with the world record of fastest ODI hundred against Sri Lanka in 1996. He reached the milestone off just 37 balls, a record which was broken after 17 years.
Shahid Afridi was a regular pick for selectors when it came to ODI cricket. He won not only the trust of selectors but the fans both in and outside Pakistan.
Two years later, he made his test debut playing against Australia in Karachi.
The making of the Boom Boom Afridi
Shahid Afridi continued his aggressive batting style which gave him the name “Boom Boom Afridi“. Even though he was not quite consistent putting big individual scores, he maintained a strike rate of 117, which is not quite common in ODI cricket.
Huge fans base and match winning performances landed Shahid Afridi into the advertiser’s spotlight. He appeared in numerous TV commercials and has been a brand ambassador of major brands.
Within a few years, he became a household name.
Shahid Afridi played 98 Twenty20 international 98 matches scoring 1,405 runs. He took 97 wickets with best bowling figure of 4/11. He played a major role in ICC T20 World Cup 2009 that Pakistan won under the captaincy of Younus Khan.
He led Pakistan team before he stepped down as a captain. He was not included in the squad in the T20 after he stepped down from captaincy.
Shahid Afridi was expecting a farewell match and had made a number of media appearances with hints of the same, however, his ambition could not come true. It was on Sunday in Sharjah that he said farewell to international cricket.
“I have said goodbye to international cricket. I am playing for my fans and will continue to play this league for another two years but it’s goodbye from international cricket. Now my foundation is important for me. I have played with seriousness and in a professional way for my country.”
There was mixed reaction from fans and experts on Shahid Afridi’s decision. There is a large number of Tweeps who think he deserved a better farewell than this.
How do you take his retirement? Let us know below.