Cricket fans were left confused as both Sarfaraz Ahmed and Mohammad Rizwan seemed to be donning the role of stand-in skipper on Day 3 of the Karachi Test between Pakistan and New Zealand. They even combined to call for a DRS review, and it proved to be a successful one as Devon Conway had to make his way back for 92.
Bizarre scenes played out in Karachi on Wednesday, December 28, after regular captain Babar Azam did not take the field at the start of Day 3. According to reports, Babar, Shan Masood, and Agha Salman are down with flu.
Rizwan, who was dropped for the Test in favor of Sarfaraz, came in as a substitute and was seen moving the field around, suggesting that he was the stand-in captain. However, when it came to the DRS call, it was Sarfaraz who was calling the shots.
In the 53rd over of New Zealand’s first innings, Pakistan left-arm spinner Nauman Ali trapped Conway on the backfoot as the southpaw missed his flick across the line. The on-field umpire Aleem Dar did not raise his finger, after which Sarfaraz and Rizwan were involved in a conversation regarding taking the DRS.
Eventually, it was Sarfaraz who made the signal, asking for a review. While it is not very clear in the video, Rizwan also seemed to raise his hand briefly before perhaps realizing that he was not authorized to take a call on whether or not the team could go for the DRS review.
As per ICC rules, a substitute fielder cannot be an official captain on the cricket field.
The good part for Pakistan was that the review turned out to be a smart one as ball-tracking confirmed three reds and the hosts had their first wicket. Conway missed out on a hundred but featured in a brilliant opening 183-run stand with Tom Latham, who went on to score a century.
New Zealand were 215/1 after 65 overs in response to Pakistan’s first-innings total of 438.
Rizwan was dropped in favor of Sarfaraz after poor show against England
Pakistan went into the Karachi Test with Sarfaraz being picked in the playing XI ahead of Rizwan. The former is playing his first Test match since January 2019 and marked his comeback with an impressive 86 in the first innings.
Rizwan had a forgettable Test series against England, managing only 141 runs in six innings at an average of 23.50.
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