Pakistan’s Twenty20 captain Shahid Afridi is all set to take over the reins of the ODI and Test side as well for the upcoming Asia Cup and the tour of England.
Although the board was yet to make a formal announcement in this regard, sources confirmed that Afridi along with team manager Yawar Saeed today met Butt in his office to discuss the future tours where the flamboyant all-rounder was offered the captaincy for all three formats of the game.
“The meeting also discussed the scenario in view of yesterday’s meeting of the National Assembly standing committee on sports which recommended that the bans and fines on players be removed,” a source said.
“Afridi was asked by the chairman whether he had any problems accepting Younis Khan and Shoaib Malik back in the team and he said no he was fine with their presence in the Test side,” the source added.
This is the first time that Afridi will lead Pakistan in Tests and the all-rounder himself has not played any since mid 2006 in England.
“Yawar’s presence indicates how influential a role he is wielding these days in the cricket affairs because he was the one who convinced Afridi to make himself available for the Tests as well,” another source said.
After their meeting, Afridi and Butt went into a discussion with the national selection committee at the Gaddafi stadium for the finalisation of the names of 30 probables for the Asia Cup and England tour.
Former captain, Younis Khan, who today left for England to play for county Surrey until mid-July, is expected to be named in the probables for the England tour. Fast bowler, Shoaib Akhtar is also expected to be recalled in the short list of players.
Pakistan, after playing in the Asia Cup in June, will leave for England to play two-Test series against Australia and then a four-Test series against England.
They will also feature in four T20 internationals and five one-dayers on the tour. Afridi recently led Pakistan in the Twenty20 World Cup in the West Indies where they lost to Australia in the semi-finals.