As he prepares for his home debut with Middlesex, paceman Shaheen Shah Afridi feels that Pakistan would benefit from its players’ engagement in English county cricket.
The young Pakistani bowler is one of ten Pakistani cricketers who have agreed to play overseas for at least part of the 2022 season.
Mohammad Abbas, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Shan Masood, Azhar Ali, and Mohammad Rizwan are among the high-profile members of the team.
On the night of Middlesex’s County Championship match against Leicestershire at Lord’s, Afridi observed, “I think I saw like nine or ten players here this year, and that’s excellent for Pakistan cricket.”
Despite the coronavirus outbreak, Pakistan has been a regular visitor to England since the 2019 World Cup in England and Wales.
In 2020, they lost a three-match Test series 1-0 and drew a Twenty20 campaign 1-1, while the previous year, they lost a one-day international series 3-0 and a T20 match 2-1.
Afridi, a left-arm fast bowler, stated the squad had underperformed.
“We didn’t play very good cricket here as a team,” he remarked, “so I think the top ones are all there now.” “So it could be beneficial for us to familiarize ourselves with the conditions and pitches. Perhaps this will also benefit the national team.”
Fans of English domestic cricket have long been familiar with Pakistani players.
From the 1960s onwards, Asif Iqbal (Kent), Zaheer Abbas (Gloucestershire), and star all-rounder Imran Khan (Sussex), who was recently removed as Pakistan’s prime minister, all became well-known characters on the county stage.