ISLAMABAD: Former Twenty20 skipper Shahid Afridi feels that Pakistan is not producing fine cricketers as during the past few years the focus has been mainly on quantity and not quality.
“Instead of going after quantity, we should concentrate on quality to meet international standards,” he said while talking to a private news channel.
Afridi, who resigned from captaincy after the team’s poor showing in this year’s World T20, said now we can see a lot of first class cricketers whereas in our times playing in first-class cricket was more difficult than to play for Pakistan. “Granting of caps to such a large number of cricketers has run counter to the efforts to produce quality players,” he said.
Afridi said “now our team is not the one it used to be at the time of players like Imran Khan. “Back then there were several stars but now we just see two to three stars,” he said.
He said first there used to be school, district, college and university cricket but now it is not seen. “We should look for those places in the country where we used to get talented cricketers in the past,” he pointed out. He said the current cricket is going too fast and now we should get out of the 90s cricket.
Responding to a question, the all-rounder said he is grateful to God that he has got so much respect and fame. “Giving or not giving respect is all in God’s hand and I am very thankful to him,” he said.
Afridi, 36, said it was a dream for him to play for Pakistan and then Pakistan winning the 2009 World T20 was also a very big achievement for him.
Afridi, who for a long time held the record for the fastest ODI century in 37 deliveries, said he has no plans to go into politics or coaching. “My aim is to set up as many academies for the youngstersas possible,” he said.
Afridi said he and the players got huge amount of support in India in the World T20. Speaking about his “more loved in India than Pakistan” statement, Afridi said his statement was for the educated people but some ex players made it an issue.