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‘Educated nations should not follow India’: Shahid Afridi on New Zealand and England cancelling Pakistan tour

Former Pakistan cricketer Shahid Afridi has once again made scathing remarking against India, saying ‘educated nations should not follow their neighbouring nation’ and take a stand as per their understanding.

Shahid delivered a shocker after New Zealand and England pulled out of their respective tours of Pakistan.

Following reports of a security threat, New Zealand Cricket (NZC) abandoned their entire limited-overs tour an hour before the first ODI in Rawalpindi on September 17.

Notably, NZC didn’t mention any detail of the security threat with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), and their players soon returned to Auckland.

Speaking about the same, Afridi said that New Zealand players are loved in Pakistan but did the ‘unforgivable act of opting out from the tour without explaining the ‘potential threat’.

“New Zealand cricketers are loved in Pakistan and for them to do something like this is unforgivable. If there was any potential threat, they should have been shared with the PCB and waited for Pakistan’s security forces to assess the situation,” Afridi told Cricket Pakistan.

After New Zealand, England also withdrew from their men’s and women’s tours in October, citing players’ mental health issues as the primary reason.

“We all know that there is a huge amount of scrutiny when it comes to arranging tours. Proper investigations are conducted by the security members of the touring nation. The routes are defined and only when the process is completed, that is when the teams are given the green signal to visit the country,” added Afridi.

The 44-year-old also reacted to reports claiming an e-mail that prompted the Kiwis to abandon their tour was generated from India through a VPN showing the location of Singapore.

“If you have to look at the bigger picture then I think we need to take a decision which shows the world that we are also a country and we have our pride. It’s ok if one country is behind us but I don’t think other countries should also make the same mistake,” he further added.

“They are all educated nations and should not follow India. Instead, cricket should improve relations. The situation was bad in India. We were getting threats. Our board asked us to go and we went there. Similarly, during Covid-19, the situation that there was in England, the cricket went on. If you trust false e-mails and cancel tours then I believe you are offering them fodder to win.”

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