Afridi is an underrated odi player in some ways (especially his bowling which was always overshadowed by a couple of freak innings with the bat across all forms) but he isn't walking into many test teams from the past 30 years. Let's keep a little grounded in reality here.
No he doesn't. Wouldn't have him as number one spinner in any reasonable strength team as that's not a role he's ever taken on because he's not that good.
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Afridi as test spinner? Hmm, let's see.
He would not walk in to any SC team as the spinner, even struggle as the 2nd spinner
80s & 90s
England over Giles, Salisbury, Emburey et al - definietly yes.
West Indies - Definitely yes over Roger Harper, and being a better batsman and Murray, especially against spin. Sunil Narine is the only exception who may become better than Afridi.
90s to present
South Africa since re admission- Hell yeah over Clive Eksteen, Niky Boje, Pat Symcox or Paul Harris or even John Traicos before re admission.
New Zealand - Easily better spinner than Dipak Patel, Mathew Hart, Mark Haslem and as good as Vettori
Australia - Probably after their fall,as good as Lyon, definitely better than host of wrist spinners they produces
Zimbabwe- Would be their best player at current. Better than P. Strang and A. Whitall. Par with Price if not better.
6/9 sides would love to had him as their spinner at various points in their history. His statement has merit.
Member of the Sanga fan club. (Ugh! it took me so long to become a real fan of his)
In the 80s sides, he would walk into Indian team as a spinner in the 85-90 span, when Doshi retired and his place was taken by the likes of Hirwani, Shivaramakrishnan, etc. He'd walk into the Kiwi side when they'd play in the subcontinent ( Kiwis have no reason to go for a spinner in home conditions in the 80s) and he'd definitely walk into the Aussie side for stretches of the 80s as their primary spinner too.
I am not talking about waking into the best possible teams of the 80s or 90s and Afridi getting selected or not, i am talking about the teams that actually took the field and in terms of those rosters, there definitely are times when Afridi the test spinner makes it to many a side.
Shane Watson. Occasionally good for slogging a few runs and bowls some tidy medium pace.
In tests perhaps Watto has a case in this thread. But in limited overs contest, he is an absolute beast with the bat, so i dont think he qualifies for those formats.
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