Pakistan cricket is known for its ability to produce some unexpected moments both on and off the field which can either be through their cricketing brilliance or its innumerable gaffes. On the third morning of the 1st Test against New Zealand, something similar happened. With captain Babar Azam not taking the field due to a flu, it was expected that the team management would depute someone from the playing XI to take charge as designated vice-captain Mohammad Rizwan had been dropped for the match.
Rizwan though was seen leading the team as a substitute and to everyone’s amazement he was also taking calls on the field, which is against the laws of the game that clearly state that a substitute cannot act as captain.
Later it was made clear that former captain Sarfaraz Ahmed was in charge but he too went for a review after consulting Rizwan and the moment was caught on camera. Cricket fans were left in splits in Twitter over this confusion.
Here are some reactions
I guess initially they sent Rizwan as captain only.. but when they were informed about laws then Sarfaraz was given responsibility to take reviews😂
As far as field setting/bowling changes are concerned, anyone can do that (technically)
— Rohit Yadav (@cricrohit) December 28, 2022
Lol 🤣, Rizwan is setting fields and changing bowlers.
While Sarfaraz is designated captain only for taking Review!! 👌🏻
— cric guru 🇮🇳 (@bccicc) December 28, 2022
Does Rizwan not know that substitute fielders can’t actually captain the team during the time that they are on as substitutes
How embarrassing is this for the PCB as well as Rizwan himself – and what was the issue in letting Sarfaraz direct the fielders etc
— omar r quraishi (@omar_quraishi) December 28, 2022
Mazher bhai why you of all people are silent on this?
How and why is Rizwan captaining instead of Sarfaraz by violating ICC rules?
— Kabir (@CricketTime100) December 28, 2022
— Abdullah Ansari (@Abdullah719_) December 28, 2022
Wait, they bettered it 😂 Sarfaraz, who replaced Rizwan in the XI, is the official captain, while Rizwan, who is on as a substitute, seems to be unofficially in charge. Peak Pakistan cricket.#PAKvNZ #PAKvsNZ https://t.co/m4hpPzu72X
— Rohit Sankar (@imRohit_SN) December 28, 2022
The Pakistan team management later clarified that it was Sarfaraz who was the stand-in captain and not Rizwan. But the actions of the two men on the ground didn’t really convey the same story.
New Zealand are in a solid position in their response to Pakistan’s first innings total of 438. Openers Tom Latham (113) and Conway (92) have laid a strong foundation for the middle order to build on.
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