- Muhammad Yusuf considered his captaincy was given to Shoaib Malik who was less experienced
- Yusuf’s candid revelation highlights the intrigue and controversy often present behind the scenes in cricket
- He believes personal likes or dislike should not be included while selecting team squad
As the cricketing world gears up for the upcoming World Cup, cricket enthusiasts are treated to a flurry of pre-tournament shows where cricket legends and seasoned journalists dissect team performances. It’s a post-match kind of discussion that delves deep into the intricacies of cricket matches.
One such discussion took an unexpected turn as Muhammad Yusuf, a former cricket stalwart, shed light on a controversy that had long been buried in the of cricket history. It was a tale of captaincy, one that involved the appointment of Shoaib Malik as the captain of the Pakistan cricket team, despite him not even being part of the playing XI.
The story goes back to the 2007 World Cup when Pakistan, under the captaincy of Inzamam ul Haq, suffered an early exit from the tournament. In the wake of this disappointment, Inzamam decided to step down as captain, leaving a leadership vacuum that needed to be filled. The logical choices for captaincy were Younis Khan, Muhammad Yusuf, and Shahid Afridi, all of whom were established players with a wealth of experience.
However, to the astonishment of many, including Yusuf himself, Shoaib Malik, a relative newcomer to the team, was handed the captain’s armband. This decision raised eyebrows, as there were more experienced players available who seemed better suited for the role.
During a candid moment on a SAMAA channel show, Muhammad Yusuf revealed his side of the story. He expressed his surprise and disappointment, saying, “After Inzamam ul Haq retired from captaincy, I was the obvious choice due to my excellent performance. But I wasn’t selected as the captain. Instead, someone else who wasn’t even part of the team was made captain, referring to Shoaib Malik.”
Yusuf went on to assert that he was performing consistently at that time, making him a natural candidate for the captaincy. However, due to personal animosities or dislikes from certain members, he was overlooked. He added, “Even if they had a problem with me, they could have considered Younis Khan or Shahid Afridi.”
The situation only began to improve when the captaincy was eventually passed to Shahid Afridi, who, as Yusuf noted, was a consistent performer himself. This shift in leadership hinted at a broader issue of nepotism or favoritism prevailing within the cricketing world, where personal preferences sometimes took precedence over merit.
Muhammad Yusuf’s revelation serves as a reminder of the intrigue and controversy that often lurk behind the scenes of the cricketing world. As the 2023 World Cup approaches, fans and analysts alike will be watching closely, hoping for a tournament that is not only defined by on-field excellence but also by fairness and transparency in leadership decisions.