Sarfraz Ahmed needs to quit captaincy in at least one format, feels Zaheer Abbas

Sarfraz Ahmed needs to quit captaincy in at least one format, feels Zaheer Abbas

Sarfraz has failed to deliver with the bat while leading the side and it has been a growing cause of concern.

Sarfraz Ahmed
Sarfraz Ahmed. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Even though such a concern is yet to come up in case of Virat Kohli, India’s captain in all three formats of the game – in Pakistan, voices have started to surface over continuing Sarfraz Ahmed as the captain in all three versions. One of the country’s former greats – Zaheer Abbas – recently said the 29-year-old player should step down from captaincy in at least one format.

Sarfraz has given a stable leadership to Pakistan after a while and the team has done well under him across the formats. He has led them to become the No.1 in T20Is, win the Champions Trophy in ODIs and also put up some memorable performances in Test. But for Abbas, the man is operating under immense pressure.

“He can’t continue to captain in all three formats. The pressure is too much for him. I think he should himself decide which format he should relinquish the captaincy,” Abbas was quoted as telling reporters on the sideline of a book-launching ceremony.

Captaining and performing in all formats not easy

“I don’t think Sarfraz can manage being captain and to perform in all three formats. Better for him if he decides to just focus on two formats his performance will also improve,” added Abbas, who has scored 5,062 runs in 78 Test matches between 1969 and 1985 with 12 hundreds.

Abbas, a former president of the International Cricket Council who has also officiated a Test match in 1993 as the match referee, said the art of batting has taken a toll and performances have headed down in Tests because of the popularity and high frequency of T20 cricket. His own country is host to the Pakistan Super League, one of the most popular T20 tournaments in the world at the moment.

Sarfraz has also come under intense criticism at times when the Men in Green have failed to deliver, for example, in the Asia Cup in September when Pakistan were walloped twice by arch-rivals India. Former Pakistan captain Moin Khan backed the current skipper, who is also the team’s wicketkeeper like the former was, saying it was not right to blame the captain every time the team played badly.

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