Afridi still available for Pakistan


Shahid Afridi has indicated that he remains available for selection for Pakistan, despite falling out of favour with the selection committee.

Afridi, now 36, feels he still has something to offer and believes he can still play for a few more years.

The man known as 'Boom Boom' told "I'll be available for the national team whenever it needs me,

"In fact before coming (to this interview) I spoke with the chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq and told him that it is good to have youngsters in the team but in case he needs me I will be available.

"I am very focused on cricket and want to continue it. I am looking after myself very well and working hard on my fitness.

"I still feel that I can play for the next couple of years whether it is for Pakistan or PSL (Pakistan Super League), Big Bash or England (domestic) T20s."

Afridi offered praise to new Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur, saying: "I have played under Mickey Arthur's coaching; it was back in 2003 when I was playing a domestic season in South Africa with Griqualand West.

"I find him a very good and aggressive coach and I think the Pakistan team needs an aggressive coach.

"He has experience of working with big teams such as Australia and South Africa too so I can expect that he will bring good results for Pakistan."

The explosive batsman expressed the view that new Chief Selector Inzamam-ul-Haq would have been better suited to the role of batting coach, saying: "In my personal opinion I would have loved to see Inzamam-ul-Haq as a batting coach with Pakistan,

"It would have been really helpful for the team. He could have been a selector at the same time, too."

Afridi believes that Pakistan have the ability to do well in England, but has stressed that it will not be easy: "To beat England in their conditions is a huge achievement,

"The amount of domestic cricket they play is massive and that is the reason their batsmen and bowlers are so familiar with the pitches in the country.

"These factors will favour England in the coming series.

"Even if Pakistan manage to draw the series I think it will be a big achievement.

"Pakistan's Test team however is very stable and has done well lately in the subcontinent but to win in England the players will have to put in hard yards."

Afridi stepped down as T20 captain, after Pakistan's disappointing World T20 campaign, but it remains to be seen if he will retain his place in the squad for Pakistan's single T20I in England.