The Pakistan Cricket Board has sought the help of a sports psychologist to help experienced all-rounder Shahid Afridi regain his confidence in bowling ahead of the ICC Champions Trophy.
Afridi has been named in the shortlist of 30 probables for the Champions Trophy by the national selectors but indications are that if he doesn’t perform in the President’s Cup limited overs tournament he might be overlooked in the final selection. Afridi had two good innings of 34 and 88 in the recent five match ODI series in South Africa but has struggled as a bowler which is his primary role in the team. He went wicket less in all five ODIs in South Africa.
Afridi and senior batsman Younis Khan,who has been dropped for the Champions Trophy,have both vowed to play in the President’s Cup and make an impression on the national selectors. Afridi yesterday spent time at the National Stadium with the PCB sports counsellor and psychologist Moin ul Atiq. Moin,himself a former player for Pakistan,spent considerable time with the all-rounder giving him lectures and also watching him bowl in the nets.
According to Moin,the PCB has also given him the task of having counselling sessions with other key players before the Champions Trophy. The PCB in the past has also utilized the services of another sports psychologist Maqbool Babri to work with banned pace bowler Muhammad Aamir and some other players with known behavioural problems including Ahmed Shahzad,Zulqarnain Haider,Umar Akmal etc.