Former Pakistan cricketer Danish Kaneria has warned the bowling department ahead of the T20 World Cup about injured ace pacer Shaheen Afridi. Kaneria thinks the pacer will need some time to get back into rhythm and full fitness heading directly into the showpiece event in Australia.
He also mentioned that the left-arm seamer remains doubtful for Pakistan's opening match against India.
The statement came as Pakistan bowlers were taken to the cleaners by England batters in the sixth T20I in Lahore on Friday (September 30).
Chasing 170, Philip Salt slammed 41-ball 88 as England beat Pakistan by eight wickets with 5.3 overs to spare. Shadab Khan was the only bowler to pick up wickets and finished with figures of 2/34.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, Kaneria said:
“Pakistan bowling departments must bring in variations because Shaheen Afridi will not be 100 percent. You don’t even know if he will be available for the first game against India or after the first game. It’s tough to come back to rhythm and fitness.”
Shaheen Afridi is currently undergoing rehab in London after a knee injury ruled him out of the Asia Cup and ongoing T20Is against England. He will also miss the upcoming tri-series involving Pakistan, BlackCaps and Bangladesh in New Zealand.
The speedster will join the Pakistan squad in Australia ahead of the T20 World Cup. He will likely miss the high-voltage Indo-Pak match in Melbourne on October 23.
“Illogical statements”- Danish Kaneria slams team management ahead of T20 World Cup
Kaneria also questioned Pakistan’s preparations for the T20 World Cup after they failed to defend 170 against England. He asked why all-rounder Iftikhar Ahmed did not bowl despite finishing with figures of 1/16 runs in his four overs in the fifth T20I.
“Team management comes into the press conference and blames kudrat (Nature). Illogical statements from the chief selector, coaches, and all departments.”
“Iftikhar Ahmed was a surprise package, who gave 16 runs in his four overs in the last match. You didn’t bowl him against England in the sixth T20I. Did you want to level the series? No plan to defend 170.”
Babar Azam and Co. will play the T20I decider against England in Lahore on Sunday (October 2).