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Former Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ramiz Raja said it is insanity to think that the board would abandon left-arm fast bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi in his time of need.
His comments come after interim chief selector Shahid Afridi alleged that Shaheen had to pay his own expenses when he travelled to England to undergo rehabilitation after suffering a knee injury during the tour of Sri Lanka in July.
Shahid further claimed that he got a doctor to contact Shaheen when the 22-year-old was in the UK.
However, Ramiz, who was recently removed as PCB chairman, insisted that all this is a big misunderstanding and an “unfortunate controversy”.
“How can you even think that PCB can disown Shaheen Afridi? It is beyond my understanding. It’s an unfortunate controversy,” he said on fans forum with Ramiz as quoted by Cricwick.
“It could be that in this case, there was a lack of clarity. Because he had to leave quickly from Dubai, maybe there was some ticketing issue. Because he went where he had to go, but he didn’t like the place, so he went somewhere else.
“But I would like to make one thing clear. Our players are our biggest stakeholders. Ask anybody. What we are doing, no cricket board doesn’t do. And not just for players who play for the national team. First Class players, junior players as well.”
Shaheen re-injured his knee in the 2022 T20 World Cup final and was subsequently ruled out of the three-Test series against England, which Pakistan lost 3-0.
He was also not picked for the ongoing two-Test series against New Zealand, which started on Monday in Karachi.
Pakistan Squad for New Zealand Test Series: Babar Azam (capt), Abdullah Shafique, Abrar Ahmed, Agha Salman, Hasan Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Kamran Ghulam, Mir Hamza, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Naseem Shah, Nauman Ali, Sajid Khan, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Saud Shakeel, Shahnawaz Dahani, Shan Masood and Zahid Mahmood