Former Pakistan fast-bowling greats – Wasim Akram and Shoaib Akhtar have labelled Mohammad Amir’s decision to retire from Test cricket as ‘bit surprising’. On Friday, Amir announced his retirement from Test cricket at the age of 27 due to regular injuries and excess of workload in international cricket.
“To me, Mohammad Amir retiring from Test cricket is a bit surprising because you peak at 27-28 and Test cricket is where you are judged against the best, it’s the ultimate format. Pakistan will need him in two Tests in Australia and then three in England,” Akram tweeted.
Amir announced his retirement from Test cricket and he expressed gratitude to Prime Minister Imran Khan, former Pakistan players Akram, Waqar Younis and Shahid Afridi. “Thank you, PCB, our PM @ImranKhanPTI @wasimakramlive Bhi @SAfridiOfficial Bhi @waqyounis99 & @yousaf1788. Thank you and my fans for always supporting me and I hope you all will support my this decision also see video link,” Amir had tweeted.
Amir announced his retirement from the longest format on Friday having played 36 Tests in his chequered career that saw him being banned for spot-fixing. “It was Amir’s time to pay back to Pakistan cricket. If I was 27, I would love to play Test cricket. It is the ultimate test for a cricketer. Amir should have carried on and helped Pakistan win Tests, a format in which the team is struggling,” said another pace legend Akhtar on his Youtube channel.
Former captain Waqar Younis posted a rather cryptic tweet in his reaction to Amir’s retirement. “All the best with your white-ball cricket,” he wrote tagging Amir. Former opener and captain Ramiz Raja, too, was left disappointed.
“Amir white flagging Test Cricket at 27 is disappointing. Besides being dismissive of the greatest format that makes stars & legends his decision is clearly not in in line with the needs of Pak ckt which is desperately looking to reboot test cricket. Was time to repay & not eject,” Raja wrote.
Amir in the video had said that it was an honour for him to play Test cricket for Pakistan and register some records. The 27-year-old further said that it was a dream come true for him to play the red-ball cricket. He thanked God for giving him all the opportunities. He also acknowledged his five-year time off the field and said it is difficult for a fast bowler to return and train after a gap.
“It was my dream to represent Pakistan in Test cricket. Allah made my dream come true, gave me respect and helped me in creating a world record. But due to some ill-fate and cricketing reasons, I retired from the format. Ill-fate is because of the five years in which I could not play cricket. It is very difficult for a fast bowler to take five years gap. Recovering and training the body becomes very difficult,” he said.
Amir made his Test debut against Sri Lanka in Galle in July 2009. He represented his country in 36 Tests, taking 119 wickets at an average of 30.47. His best bowling returns – six for 44 – came against West Indies in Kingston in April 2017.