x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Afridi to lead by example

The dashing all-rounder has promised not to be a let-down after he was named captain for Pakistan's World Twenty20 defence.

Shahid Afridi promised to lead by example after he was named captain for Pakistan's World Twenty20 defence. Pakistan ended weeks of speculation by announcing that Afridi would lead his country in the T20 World Cup - starting in the Caribbean on April 30 - confirming his appointment less than a fortnight after fining him and putting him on a six-month probation for a ball-tampering incident in Australia in January.

The all-rounder could hardly conceal his joy at his change in fortune, saying: "It is a big honour for me and I will try to live up to the expectations of the board and the nation. It is a big day for me to get the award and also the captaincy. "I will try to lead by example and not let down my supporters and fans. We have the capability of defending our title." Pakistan won the World Twenty20 in England last year and Afridi played a stellar role in the team's success.

Younus Khan was the captain then, but the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has put an indefinite ban on his selection, along with Mohammed Yousuf, following a tumultuous tour of Australia, where Pakistan lost every game amid reports of infighting. During the fifth one-day international of that tour, Afridi was caught tampering with the ball and banned for two Twenty20 internationals by the International Cricket Council.

Afridi also received a fine of three million Pakistan ruprees (Dh130,000) and was put on probation, while Younus and Yousuf were barred from selection, Shoaib Malik and Rana Naved ul Hasan were banned for a year, and Kamran and Umar Akmal were also fined. But having been punished, the PCB have now given Afridi the chance to make amends. @Email:arizvi@thenational.ae

announcement of the 15-member earlier this month, without a captain being named. Misbah-ul-Haq, Salman Butt and Abdul Razzaq were reportedly in the frame as well, but the latter believes the best man has got the job. "I think he is the best choice to lead the team now because he has the ability to lead by example and gel the team," said Razzaq. "I will give him my wholehearted support. Afridi being captain is a good thing

for Pakistan cricket."