The recent decision by 38-year-old Pakistan batter Mohammad Hafeez to retire from red-ball cricket after the 2-1 Test series loss to New Zealand has been labelled by some cricket insiders as an attempt by the batter to avoid fronting up to the Proteas pace attack in the upcoming Test series.
With 3,652 Test runs and a highest score of 224 (ave 37.64), along with 10 centuries and 12 half-centuries, Hafeez’s Test experience would have added great value to the touring Pakistan side.
Hafeez has been quick to assure the public that his decision to withdraw from Test cricket is not based on any personal fear of facing up to Dale Steyn and Kagiso Rabada on South African tracks.
‘People think that I am afraid of South Africa’s playing conditions and Steyn and Rabada. I have to face these bowlers in one-day cricket also. I will answer these statements with my performance,’ Hafeez toldGeo News, who added that his focus is on white-ball cricket.
Hafeez will continue to be available for white ball cricket selection and has just been appointed skipper of the Lahore Qalandars for the next Pakistan Super League (PSL).
The Qalandars have secured AB de Villiers’ services for the 2019 league.
‘Our aim is now to win matches in PSL. We have a good combination of players, especially AB de Villiers, who is a world-class player,’ said Hafeez.
‘The best thing is we are trying to convince De Villiers to play the full length of the tournament. If that happens we will get to see him in action in Pakistan also.’
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