Pakistan’s former cricketer Shahid Afridi has admitted to pitch tempering 17 years after the incident and said that he tempered the pitch with his boots during the Test against England in Faislabad in 2005. The allegations had led for the former Pakistani captain’s suspension from one Test and two ODIs in 2005.
“I was applying my full force and nothing was happening. Then suddenly, a gas cylinder exploded and everyone got distracted. I told Malik (Shoaib Malik).’Mera dil chaah raha hai main idhar patch bana du. Ball toh turn ho!(I want to create a patch on this pitch so badly. I want the ball to turn!),” Afridi said on a Samaa TV show.
Afridi further added, “Malik replied, ‘Kar de. Koi nai dekh raha’ (Do it, no one is watching). So I did that! And then, what happened is history. When I look back at it, you do realise it was a mistake.”
Afridi, who played 27 Tests, 398 ODIs, and 99 T20 Internationals for Pakistan, was also banned for two Twenty20 internationals after being found guilty of ball-tampering during Pakistan’s two-wicket loss to Australia at the WACA in Perth in January 2010.
Afridi, captaining the side in Mohammad Yousuf, was caught by TV cameras biting the ball. This was reported to the on-field umpires by the TV umpire and, after a chat with Afridi, the umpires changed the ball.