The sacking of Sarfaraz Ahmed as the captain of Pakistan team in all three formats was on the cards for a long time. But what is even more painful for the wicketkeeper-batsman is the fact that he also seems to have lost his place in the side. Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ehsan Mani has declared that Sarfaraz won't be part of the team for the upcoming tour of Australia.
So, how is the sacked former Pakistan skipper reacting? We don't know as yet but his better half has decided to speak out and let everyone know that, in her opinion, at least, he is far from done with international cricket.
Khushbakht Sarfaraz spoke to Deccan Chronicle about the recent developments. She revealed that the information of this decision by PCB came to them three days beforehand. "We knew this (sacking) three days ago. It is not the end of the road for him. He will be able to play burden-free now," Mrs Sarfaraz told the newspaper.
But the most interesting response from Khushbakht came when she was asked whether this is it for her husband in international cricket, and whether he would consider retiring. "Why should he retire now? He is only 32. How old is Dhoni? Has he retired at his current age? My husband will make a strong come back. He is a fighter and will come back," she asserted.
The sacking of Sarfaraz as a captain and player was long expected. Earlier this year, before the World Cup, Pakistan played a series against Australia where Sarfaraz's replacement, Mohammad Nawaz, scored two hundreds. However, for the World Cup, the skipper was brought back into the team.
Unfortunately, both his personal performance and that of his team in the big event left a lot to be desired. One of the most criticised moves that the keeper-batsman made was choosing to bowl first against India in a crucial World Cup match. The decision backfired immensely as India, powered by a Rohit Sharma hundred, posted a big total and Sarfaraz's team failed to mount a serious challenge.
Since the World Cup, PCB has got rid of all three people at the forefront of the World Cup planning. Chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq and coach Mickey Arthur were sent packing earlier. Misbah-ul-Haq has been appointed to the dual role of chief selector and coach. The captaincy has been split between Azhar Ali and Babar Azam. The former will lead the team in Tests while the latter in T20Is.