Pakistan’s seasoned middle-order batsman Asad Shafiq revealed the closure of his illustrious cricketing career after leading Karachi Whites to victory in the National T20 tournament. The decision comes on the heels of Shafiq’s admission that he no longer experiences the same enthusiasm and passion for the sport, coupled with a realization that his fitness levels are no longer commensurate with the demands of international cricket. The 37-year-old, who played a pivotal role in Pakistan’s Test batting lineup from 2010 to 2020, expressed his decision during a press conference after the title win.
Shafiq, with a remarkable record of 4,660 runs in 77 Test matches at an average of 38.19, including 12 centuries and 27 fifties, conveyed that the decision was made after being dropped from the national team in 2020. Despite playing domestic cricket for three years in the hope of a recall, Shafiq recognized that approaching 38 years of age was an opportune time to retire gracefully. He highlighted his commitment to the game during challenging times, notably after the spot-fixing scandal in 2010, and expressed pride in being part of the process that restored confidence in Pakistan cricket.
The veteran cricketer is set to play three more games in the upcoming Patrons Trophy for SNGPL before officially concluding his cricketing journey. Beyond the field, Shafiq confirmed his association with the Wahab Riaz-led selection committee formed by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), signifying his continued contribution to the sport in a different capacity.
As Shafiq took his final bow, his teammates paid tribute with a guard of honor, marking the end of an era for a player whose resilience and contributions will be etched in the annals of Pakistan cricket. As he transitions to the next phase of his career, the cricketing community bids farewell to a stalwart who graced the pitch with elegance and determination, leaving an indelible mark on the nation’s cricketing legacy.