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PCB apologise for ‘pre-planned’ joke tweet after Sarfaraz is sacked

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) have come under fire for a tweet posted by the board’s official account which appeared to poke fun at former captain Sarfaraz Ahmed, who was axed from his role on Friday, October 18. The PCB have since apologised.

The tweet displayed a GIF of Pakistan batsman Fakhar Zaman dancing in front of Sarfaraz while another member of the Pakistan set-up waved away the wicketkeeper-batsman by pointing a finger. It was posted as part of a promotional campaign for the 2020 T20 World Cup, with Friday marking a year to go before the start of the men’s tournament, but, coinciding with news breaking of Sarfaraz’s removal from the captaincy, some felt it was making light of the wicketkeeper’s departure. The tweet was subsequently deleted.

The board replied to a tweet by ESPNcricinfo senior editor Osman Samiuddin which displayed the GIF and criticised the PCB, explaining that the tweet had been pre-planned.

“The PCB apologies for this post and accepts the timing of it was wrong,” the PCB said. “This was a pre-planned post as part of the one-year to go #T20WorldCup promotional campaign. The timing of this post clashed with the captaincy announcement for which the PCB offers its regrets.”

The PCB’s captaincy announcement, which was built up with a football-style teaser tweet simply saying “Major announcement shortly”, saw Azhar Ali named as the new Test skipper and Babar Azam appointed T20I captain.

Sarfaraz has been dropped from the squads that will visit Australia for three T20Is and two Tests from November to December.

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