Sydney, Jan 3: Legendary Pakistan fast-bowler Wasim Akram was critical over the move to rest fast-bowling spearhead Shaheen Shah Afridi from the third Test against Australia at Sydney, adding that the cricketers should know that Test cricket is the ultimate form of the game.
"Straight after this there are five T20s in New Zealand, and Shaheen's the captain. But T20 cricket, who cares? I understand, it's there for entertainment and it's there for financial gain for cricket boards, for players, but cricketers should know that Test cricket is the ultimate."
"If we talk about what happened 20 years ago in this Test in Sydney, nobody knows what happened last night in T20. That's the difference. These guys have to understand and learn, if you want to be a great of the game or do you want to be a millionaire. You can become both but with a little more sense," said Akram on Fox Sports.
Pakistan’s T20I series against New Zealand, where Shaheen is the captain, begins just five days after the end of Tests in Australia. Waqar Younis, who used to be Akram’s new-ball partner with the ball in their playing days, was also left surprised over Shaheen’s omission. “We play for Test match cricket. We don’t play for T20s or one-day cricket. And if you’re missing Test match cricket purely because you are being rested, I do not understand.”
"That's a real shocker for me because I was expecting him to be a part of this Test match because he looked good in the previous match. He started feeling like the old Shaheen Afridi and started to swing the ball and the pace was getting better," he said on Channel 7.
Speaking on sidelines of day one of the third Test, Shaheen came out in defence of the Pakistan team management’s decision to rest him for third Test. “I played two games, and a lot of overs to be honest. They’re just managing my workload, the medical team and team management decided to take a rest for this (Test)," he said. (IANS)