As the end of the calendar year 2020 approaches, the International Cricket Council (ICC) on Sunday, released the ODI, Test, and T20I teams of the decade, comprising who they felt were the best performing cricketers in the specified date (01 January 2011 to 31 December 2020).
Controversial omissions were felt by every countryman. Apart from the usual suspects like MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Steve Smith, Lasith Malinga, and David Warner, etc who have completely dominated the game, what turned out to be interesting was the absence of Pakistan cricketers. Across all three formats, no Pakistan player – not even Babar Azam – managed to find a place in the playing XI.
No Pakistani Players Featured In T20I Team Of The Decade, Not Even Babar Azam
ICC turning a complete eye blind over Pakistani players seemingly didn’t play well with Pakistan fans and their veteran cricketers. To point out one, Pakistan’s legend Shoaib Akhtar was utterly disappointed with ICC’s list of the decade.
Speaking in a video on his YouTube channel after ICC’s announcement, Akhtar launched an attack at the governing body of cricket and accused it of ignoring Pakistan players. Akhtar said the ICC named an IPL XI of the decade and not a world XI as not even a single player from Pakistan featured in the side.
“They did not pick a single player from Pakistan in the team. We don’t need your (ICC) T20I Team of the Decade because you announced the IPL team, not a world cricket team,” Akhtar said on his official YouTube channel
“ICC only thinks about money, sponsorships, and TV rights. They introduced two new balls and three powerplays (in the ODI cricket). Where is Dennis Lillee, Jeff Thomson big five of West Indies, Wasim (Akram), and Waqar (Younis)?. Where are the world’s fastest bowlers and leg-spinners?. They went away because ICC commercialized and materialized cricket so much and allowed ten leagues to earn more revenue,” the 45-year-old said.
The ICC T20I team of the decade did not include Azam, who averages a remarkable 50.94 in the format, as Akthar accused the ICC of completely forgetting about Pakistan being a full-member. The legendary pacer labeled the teams picked by the body as ‘embarrassing’.
India has dominated the decade as Captains across all the three formats are Indians. MS Dhoni is the captain of the ODI and T20 team, while Virat Kohli captains the Test side of the decade