Left-arm fast bowler Mohammad Amir shocked the cricket community by calling time on his Test career at the age of 27 a couple of days ago. The entire country went into collective hysteria as the news broke, given that Pakistan is due to play some big series in the longest format of the game in coming time.
Amir played 36 Tests and picked 119 wickets with the best bowling figures of 6/44. There are also reports suggesting that Amir is planning to shift base to the UK and is in the process of obtaining a British passport. His wife Narjis is a British national and is eligible for a spouse visa, which allows him to stay in England for 30 months. He is also planning to get a house in London and settle down permanently.
Amir has said that he will only play ODIs and T20Is for Pakistan in future and this left the likes of Wasim Akram, Shoaib Akhtar and other former players disgusted. They felt that after the board and team had invested so much in him, especially after him completing his five-year ban for spot-fixing and getting him reintegrated into the cricket team; Amir is sort of abandoning everyone, who worked for him. However, one person saw this coming and is not surprised.
Mickey Arthur says he is not surprised by Amir’s decision to quit Test cricket
“He (Amir) had five years out of the game…In those five years, he didn’t do anything. His body was not up to the rigours of day in, day out Test cricket. We pushed him as much as we could during England and South Africa series because he is such a good bowler whom we wanted during those tours.”
“We’ve tried everything we possibly could with Amir. He could have managed those five years better. He’d be the first one to acknowledge that. But I understand where he was in his whole life, so it was a tough period for him. I understand all that,” Arthur was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.
He also felt that had Amir not lost those five years to the ban, he would have been Pakistan’s greatest bowler in the modern era. He felt that he is not the same bowler he was in 2009-10 and that his style and body have changed a lot. He also said that Amir was thinking about quitting five-day format for a year now, given that it was straining his body too much.
“It’s not about management here. It’s about his desire to play Test cricket and the effects it has on his body… reluctantly I accepted his decision because that’s what he wanted to do and that’s what he thought was best for himself,” Arthur added.
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