Pakistan Cricket Board sacks Sarfaraz Ahmed as Test and T20I captain
Pakistan sacked Sarfaraz Ahmed from his post as T20 and Test skipper on Friday, a week after he led the side to a shocking 3-0 home defeat against an inexperienced Sri Lanka.
The showdown Lahore gave the visitors their first T20 series win against Pakistan in seven attempts while missing 10 of their top players – including regular T20 skipper Lasith Malinga, who refused to tour Pakistan over security fears.
Senior batsman Azhar Ali will replace Sarfaraz as Test skipper, while Babar Azam will lead the Twenty20 side, the Pakistan Cricket Board said.
“Sarfaraz has been replaced... on poor performance,” said a board press release.
The change is seen as surprising despite the Sri Lanka whitewash. Pakistan had reached number one in the T20 rankings under Sarfaraz, winning 11 series along the way.
Pakistan will play three T20 internationals in Australia in November ahead of two Test matches.
“Sarfaraz’s loss in form and confidence is visible and, in the best interest of the team, it has been decided to leave him out and provide him the opportunity to reflect and regroup himself and try to reclaim his form away from international cricket,” said PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani.
Sarfaraz Ahmed is to be dropped from both the Test and T20I formats due to the drop in his overall form during the past few series #Cricket— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) October 18, 2019
Soon after the World Cup debacle, the then outgoing coach Mickey Arthur had suggested that Sarfaraz should be sacked as captain to expedite the process of rebuilding the team.
(With inputs from AFP)