Return of Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed delayed by a day
Veteran batting all-rounder Shoaib Malik captained the side in the fourth game and will be at the helm for the final ODI and also the T20I games.
Updated - Jan 29, 2019 12:42 pm
The return of Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed to home from South Africa was delayed on Monday and he will now reach Karachi on Tuesday evening. The wicketkeeper-batsman was handed a ban of four games by the International Cricket Council (ICC) after admitting making a racist remark against South African cricketer Andile Phehlukwayo during the second ODI in Durban on January 22.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) called back the 31-year-old, who leads the side in all three formats, with immediate effect after he was handed the ban for breaching the ICC’s anti-racism code of conduct. Sarfraz was suspended for the final two ODIs of the series and also the first two games of the T20I series that follows. The ODI series is tied at 2-2 after Pakistan came back strongly to win the fourth game in Johannesburg by 8 wickets and the winner will now be decided in the final game to be played in Cape Town on January 30.
Sarfraz had conceded to his act and apologized publicly and regretted for his action. He was heard of calling Phehlukwayo a “black guy” in Hindi which was caught on the stump mic after an edge off the latter’s bat missed the stumps closely.
Sarfraz had to take part in a shoot for PSL-affiliated company in Cape Town
Geo TV cited sources as saying that Sarfraz left Johannesburg for Cape Town along with the Pakistan team on Monday afternoon as he was due to take part in a shoot for a Pakistan Super League-affiliated company there.
“Sarfraz will leave Cape Town for Johannesburg at 1 am (PST) and reach Karachi via Dubai on Tuesday evening,” the report cited the sources as saying.
Veteran batting all-rounder Shoaib Malik captained the side in the fourth game and will be at the helm for the final ODI and also the T20I games. Mohammad Rizwan has replaced Sarfraz as the keeper. He took three catches in the fourth ODI, two off the bowling of Usman Shinwari who ended up as the man of the match.