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Don’t test my patience,” Shaheen Afridi sends warning after losing captaincy

Pakistan pace bowler Shaheen Afridi has issued a stern warning via his Instagram account following his removal as the T20I captain of the national team. Afridi’s cryptic post hinted at his potential to reveal a different, more ruthless side of himself if pushed too far. The message serves as a response to his recent replacement as captain by star batter Babar Azam, who is set to lead Pakistan in the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup 2024.

Babar Azam reclaimed the T20I captaincy from Shaheen Afridi after the latter’s brief tenure, which began after Pakistan’s disappointing performance in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023. Afridi’s leadership stint was marred by a 4-1 series defeat against New Zealand, prompting a change in leadership once again. Babar Azam’s return as captain signals Pakistan’s strategy shift as they prepare for the upcoming T20 World Cup.

Despite assuming captaincy duties, Shaheen Afridi’s tenure was short-lived, highlighting the challenges and uncertainties within Pakistan cricket’s leadership structure. The decision to reinstate Babar Azam as captain underscores the team management’s faith in his leadership abilities and his importance to Pakistan’s success in limited-overs cricket.

Babar Azam’s first task as captain in his second stint will be to lead Pakistan in a five-match home T20I series against New Zealand, scheduled to begin on April 18 in Rawalpindi. The series presents an opportunity for Azam to establish his leadership and build momentum ahead of the T20 World Cup later in the year.

The swift change in captaincy reflects Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) proactive approach to address team dynamics and performance concerns. Afridi’s warning on social media adds an intriguing layer to the narrative, hinting at potential tensions within the team and the stakes involved in high-pressure leadership roles.

As Pakistan gears up for a crucial phase in international cricket, the spotlight remains on Babar Azam’s leadership and the team’s ability to deliver results under his guidance. The upcoming series against New Zealand will serve as a litmus test for Azam and the team as they strive for success in the T20 format.

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