Afridi steps down as Pakistan captain

Shahid Afridi

Afridi (centre) is an iconic figure in Pakistan cricket and is known as ‘Boom Boom’ for his big-hitting style

Shahid Afridi has stepped down as Pakistan’s Twenty20 captain after their group stage exit at the World Twenty20.

The 2009 champions beat Bangladesh, but suffered defeats by New Zealand, Australia and hosts India.

Coach Waqar Younis blamed their form on the 36-year-old’s “poor captaincy”.

Afridi, the world’s leading wicket-taker in T20 internationals with 97, planned to retire from international duty at the end of the tournament but has now said he wishes to play on.

“Today I wish to inform my fans in Pakistan and all over the world that I am relinquishing the captaincy of the T20 Pakistani team of my own volition,” the all-rounder said in a statement.

“I intend to continue to play the game for my country and league cricket.”

A hard-hitting right-handed batsman and leg-spinner, he retired from Test cricket in 2010 and from one-day internationals in 2015.

Afridi has scored more sixes than any other player in the history of one-day international cricket, with 351, and is Pakistan’s fourth highest run-scorer in Twenty20s with 1,405.

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