Afridi to retire from Test cricket

LONDON: Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi, who made a comeback to Tests after four years for the series against Australia, made an unexpected announcement Friday to retire from Test cricket after the second Test against Australia at Headingley.

Afridi’s abrupt decision to end his international Test career came after Pakistan lost to Australia by 150 runs in the first test at Lord’s inside four days here Friday.

"I have struggled to adapt to this form of the game and the next Test will be my last. I would rather focus on one-day and Twenty20 cricket," Afridi said.

"I am struggling with a thigh injury and I need to get myself right. I would think Salman Butt (vice-captain) is the best man for the job now."

"I was not very keen to play Test cricket but the board asked me to see how I felt. My temperament is not good enough for Test cricket and we need a proper batsman or a proper bowler," Afridi was quoted as saying in Sky Sports.

"I can’t carry it in Test cricket where you need to be at full fitness. I’m enjoying one-day and Twenty20 so I’ll concentrate on that. It’s very difficult playing Tests after four years so it’s better to leave this cricket."

Afridi, who was playing his first Test in four years, was out for two in the second innings while Pakistan were chasing 440 for victory Friday. Afridi scored 31 in 15 balls in the first innings.

Pakistan coach Waqar Younis said it has been a tough time for Afridi.

"He was returning to Test cricket after four years. Its tough for him. There is also a bit of side strain on his left side. He thought its just not going his way. It’s hard to pursue. He plays his cricket like that. He believes in himself," Younis told Ten Sports.

"It is brave of him take the decision to return to Test cricket. When you are looking to make a comeback in Test cricket, it helps if things are easier."(IANS)

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