Former Afghanistan cricket chief executive Shafiq Stanikzai took to his official Twitter handle in the wee hours of Thursday, responding to Shoaib Akhtar’s claims about post-match mayhem among fans after Pakistan defeated Afghanistan by two wickets.
Violent scenes were witnessed at the Sharjah cricket stadium after the conclusion of the Super 4 encounter, as supporters of both teams went on a rampage, taunting and attacking each other. The chaos led to a riot after Afghanistan fans were spotted hurling chairs at their Pakistani counterparts in a violent outburst.
While the incident took the cricketing world by storm, it received reactions from prominent cricket personalities, including former Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar. In his tweet, Akhtar lashed out at the Afghanistan fans over their unruly behaviour, with a special mention on Stanikzai. “@ShafiqStanikzai your crowd & your players both need to learn a few things if you guys want to grow in the sport,” the pace legend wrote.
Reacting to Akhtar’s tweet, Stanikzai was of the view that this kind of incidents have happened in the cricket field several times in the past and that one cannot control the emotions of the crowd.
“You can’t control the emotions of the crowd and such incidents happened in the world of cricket multiple, you should go ask Kabir Khan, Inzimam Bhai and @iRashidLatif68 how we treated them. Am giving you an advice next time baat ko nation pe Mat lena,” he reacted.
Condemning the disorderly behaviour by Afghanistan fans in the stands, Shoaib Akhtar earlier wrote, “This is what Afghan fans are doing. This is what they’ve done in the past multiple times. This is a game and its supposed to be played and taken in the right spirit.”
It is pertinent to mention that the former ACB chief executive earlier expressed his views on the ugly on-field brawl between Asif Ali and Fareed Ahmad that took place in the penultimate over of the match. As Ali walked back to the pavilion after being dismissed, Fareed celebrated the wicket with a fist pump right in front of the batter. This prompted Asif to shove off the pacer, before he raised his bat, seemingly wanting to hit the Afghan pacer.
The players were then separated by the Afghan players and the umpires as Afghanistan went on to lose by two wickets. Shedding his thoughts on the incident, Stanikzai said, “This is stupidity at extreme level by Asif Ali and should be ban from the rest of the tournament, any bowler has the right to celebrate but being physical is not acceptable at all.”