Shahid Afridi Rescues 30 Pakistani Prisoners Detained in Dubai
Former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi wasn’t much of a rescuer on the cricket field in the final years of his career, but he does seem to be a bit of a savior off the field.
News is that “Boom Boom”, through his Shahid Afridi Foundation, recently helped secure the release of 30 Pakistani prisoners, who had been detained in Dubai.
Imprisoned for a variety of offences, the prisoners would have likely spent more time behind bars had Afridi not stepped in to use his influence and secure their early release.
Following the prisoners’ release, the 36-year-old cricketer took to Facebook to thank the Dubai Police Department for their ‘generosity and cooperation’.
In his own words, Afridi believes the move gives the freed 30 ‘a chance to go back to their home country and to rebuild their life afresh’.
As his career has winded down, Afridi’s philanthropic activities have gone into overdrive.
When not freeing prisoners, he is often found building hospitals, providing free education for underprivileged children and digging wells in remote areas.
Afridi’s two cents on politics: Afridi denied any claims that he will be joining politics in the near future and believes he is already serving people through the Shahid Afridi Foundation, says an earlier report.
Afridi was speaking to the media after the prize distribution ceremony in Islamia College Peshawar of Zalmi Super Six tournament and Cyclothon. The function was held before the conclusion of the Pakistan cricket team’s tour of Australia.
“What is the work of a politician?” asked Afridi. “A politician is obliged to serve his people one way or the other — I am doing that through my foundation. Also, my elders haven’t allowed me to enter politics.”
The 36-year-old, who gave up his duties as the captain of the national T20I team after the 2016 World T20, said he is not depending on the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) for a farewell match.
“I have played 20 years of international cricket for Pakistan, not the PCB,” he said. “And I am not dependent on anyone for a match. The love and support I have gotten and still get from my well-wishers and fans are reward enough for me.”
Afridi then clarified that he is not going to hang up his boots any time soon, and will continue playing domestic cricket.
“I don’t think my career is over; I am enjoying myself and I will continue to play at the highest level,” he said. “As far as playing for Pakistan is concerned, that is for the selectors to decide.”
He also commented on Pakistan’s ongoing series against Australia. “If you will play cricket in Dubai and Abu Dhabi all year long, then don’t expect victories in New Zealand and Australia,” he said. “I think the players should be given similar conditions in Pakistan to practice before going on tour foreign tours. No doubt our Test team has always performed well.”
Afridi also applauded Pakistan’s fightback in the first Test and said it could lay the foundations for success against Australia in the three-Test series.
‘I think the Australia tour in very important,” said Afridi. “The way we played in the first Test was great; we showed fighting spirit. If we continue playing like this, it won’t be difficult to beat Australia.”