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I don't know why I was ruled unfit when I was fit to play - Shahzad

10 Jun 2019 CricBuzz

Mohammad Shahzad, on Monday (June 10), came out all guns blazing against his country's cricket board. The wicketkeeper-batsman, ruled out for rest of the ongoing World Cup with a knee injury, alleged that the Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) has conspired against him.

"I still don't know why I was ruled unfit when I was fit enough to play. Some people in the board (ACB) have conspired against me," Shahzad told PTI. "Only manager, doctor and the captain knew that I was going to be replaced. Even the coach (Phil Simmons) found out much later. It was heart-breaking.

"I had finished my training (ahead of the New Zealand game) and only after I checked my phone, I found out that I have been ruled out of the World Cup due to a knee injury. None of the players in the team bus knew about it and just like me, they were in shock (at the news)."

Asadullah Khan, CEO of ACB, rubbished the claims made by Shahzad and stressed on the fact that the team can't compromise on an individual's fitness.

"What he is saying is completely wrong. A proper medical report to the ICC was submitted and then only his replacement was announced. The team could not have fielded an unfit player. I understand he is upset at not being part of World Cup anymore but the team could not have compromised on his fitness," said Khan.

Shahzad picked up the injury during Afghanistan's warm-up fixture against Pakistan. He went onto play his side's first two games of the competition and returned with mediocre scores of 0 and 7. The 31-year-old, however, was shocked by the way he was treated.

"I have had knee issues for a while now but it gets fine with a little bit of icing. I took proper rest after the Pakistan warm-up and was fit to play again and I did come back to play the first two games and was looking forward to the New Zealand game until I received the shocking news from my manager.

"Suddenly I was replaced and I had no inkling of that. This is not the way to treat a senior player. Under the current dispensation at ACB, I see more senior players getting a raw deal like I did. I really feel hard done by," added Shahzad.

The senior Afghanistan batsman played a vital role in Afghanistan qualifying for the mega event. He scored 54 against Ireland in Afghanistan's final Super Six match at the World Cup Qualifier, which was a virtual qualifying play-off. He backed it up with another half-ton - 84 of 93 - against West Indies in the final. Shahzad was also controversially dropped for the 2015 World Cup on fitness grounds.

Original Link: https://www.cricbuzz.com/cricket-news/108424/i-dont-know-why-i-was-ruled-unfit-when-i-was-fit-to-play-mohammad-shahzad-afghanistan-cricket

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