'Fans tell me they have stopped watching cricket since I was dropped': 30-year-old Pakistan star makes massive claim

Published on Jun 26, 2022 11:57 AM IST
  • The Pakistan star has claimed many fans told him they likes the “previous team better,” adding that they have stopped watching matches since he was dropped.
Pakistan players in 2015.(ICC)
Pakistan players in 2015.(ICC)

The Pakistan cricket team has produced impressive performances of late, especially in the limited-overs formats. The side had defeated Australia 2-1 in a three-match ODI series in March, and also registered a 3-0 clean sweep victory over the West Indies in another fifty-over series earlier this month. In the shortest format, Pakistan impressed the cricket fraternity in the previous year's T20 World Cup campaign, where they reached the semi-finals before going down to eventual champions Australia.

Over the past few years, the Pakistan side had seen a number of changes, with former captain Sarfaraz Ahmed sidelined from the limited-overs formats altogether and many other players losing their places in the side. One of them was opener Ahmed Shehzad, who was a regular in the white-ball sides until 2017, and made scattered appearances in T20Is until his last game for Pakistan in 2019.

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In a recent interview with Cricket Pakistan, Shehzad opened up on how a 2016 report sent by then-coach Waqar Younis had ‘hurt’ his career, adding that he “was not allowed to present my case.” Furthermore, he added that in India, Virat Kohli's career prospered because he found a mentor in MS Dhoni but in Pakistan, “people cannot stand your success.”

In the same conversation, Shehzad revealed that he has met fans who have “stopped watching cricket” since he was dropped from the Pakistan side.

“There is an entire world outside social media but when I meet fans in real life, they tell me that they have left watching cricket since I haven’t featured whereas others claim they liked the previous team better,” said Shehzad.

"I never thought I would play for Pakistan and back then, there were a number of openers available too. Fate works in mysterious ways but you have to ensure that you do your hard work," he added during the interview.

Shehzad made his Pakistan debut in 2009 at the age of 17. He has appeared in 13 Tests, 81 ODIs and 59 T20Is for the side so far.

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