Dubai: Appalled by runaway wicketkeeper Zulqarnain Haider's odd behaviour, Pakistan One-day International captain Shahid Afridi has termed his step to desert the team midway through South Africa series in Dubai as 'childish'.
"I just don't understand what he (Haider) is trying to do. He has behaved very childishly. He has behaved just like Yasir Hameed had done in England. What is he trying to achieve? In the end he will gain nothing and will lose out as a player," the Daily Times quoted Afridi, as saying.
The skipper said it was Haider's decision to leave the team hotel in Dubai and flee to London and seek asylum there, and added that if the keeper had got threats from anyone to fix matches, he should have spoken to his teammates about the matter instead of running away.
"Even if he didn't want to come to me or the team management he should have spoken to Abdul Razzaq, who is close to him. They play for the same club in Lahore. He has taken the decision of an unstable person," Afridi said.
Meanwhile, Haider said from London that everyone had a right to opinion but he had no regrets about his decision to leave the team. "Anyone in Pakistan cricket who tries to speak the truth or fight for truth is labelled a mental case or unstable. It is nothing new in Pakistan cricket."
"I don't know what is being said in the media but yes it is disappointing for me that although I have taken such a big step for the betterment of Pakistan cricket in future, I am not getting the required support from the present or past players," he added.
On Monday morning, 24-year-old Haider had fled to London just hours before Pakistan were scheduled to play their ODI series decider against South Africa in Dubai. The wicketkeeper later revealed that he had taken this extreme step after receiving death threats from match-fixers, and was now seeking asylum in the UK.