A day after calling on his countrymen to not expect much from Pakistan in the World T20, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Shahryar Khan went back on his words, saying that Shahid Afridi's side can still qualify for the semi-finals of the ongoing prestigious tournament.
Following the team's heart wrenching defeat at the hands of arch-rival India in the T20 format's pinnacle event at Eden Gardens, Shahryar Khan had slammed the team and skipper Afridi. He also claimed that the board would replace Afridi after the conclusion of the tournament.
Backtracking on his words, the 81-year-old said Pakistan are in a good position at the moment and could qualify for the semi-finals if they claim victory either against New Zealand or Australia, Express Tribune reported.
Not only this, Shahryar further went on to say that his countrymen should not criticize the team or the management in the middle of the tournament, saying that the team spirit should not be dampened.
Shahryar also praised Afridi for providing his services for the benefit of the country and said that no one could question the all-rounder's status in the team as he had led Pakistan to victory in many matches.
Pointing out that Afridi himself had expressed his desire to quit after the World T20, the former Pakistani diplomat insisted that the T20 skipper would have to present himself as a player and then the board would decide on his future.
The 2009 World T20 champions will now lock horns with New Zealand at the Punjab Cricket Stadium in Mohali on Tuesday.