Australia game could be my last, says Afridi


A disgruntled Pakistan Twenty20 captain Shahid Afridi Tuesday said his team’s final group game against Australia in Mohali could be the last of his international career.

“Maybe the next game will be the last one of my career,” said Afridi in his post match comments after his team fell short by 22 runs in their must-win group two match against New Zealand.

The defeat, their second in three games, leaves Pakistan to rely on other team’s results with New Zealand making it to the semi-finals.

New Zealand rode on a robust 48-ball 80 by Martin Guptill to post a solid 180-5 before Pakistan raced to 65-0 in 5.1 overs with opener Sharjeel Khan hitting a quickfire 25-ball 47.

But Umar Akmal (24 off 26 balls) and Ahmed Shehxad (30 off 32 balls) chewed up middle overs as Pakistan managed just 31 runs in seven middle overs. Pakistan failed to hit a single boundary in the last five overs.

Afridi had announced retirement after World Twenty20 but last month surprised everyone by saying he was reconsidering to continue even after the World Tqwenty20.

Afridi said his team needed to focus on the last game.

“We have to forget this game and focus on Australia,” said Afridi of the March 25 game, also in Mohali.

“First of all, I want to congratulate Kane Williamson, these guys have really played well. At one stage it looked like they might touch 200 but the bowlers bowled well in the middle.

“I think it was a chaseable total, we played well in the first 6 overs after that we didn’t play well at all. We built a big partnership and I thought we could easily play 8 or 9 runs per over, but we didn’t.

New Zealand pulled back through Mitchell Santner and Ish Sodhi in the middle overs to clinch the tie.

“We didn’t play well against the spin, we tried to hit the ball and go for the boundary but hit a lot of dots.

“The next game is important but we still keep repeating the same mistakes. I think in this format, the team that makes the least mistakes usually wins. In every game, we’re making errors and it’s not good for us.”

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