Shahid Afridi, Zaheer Khan want Ice Cricket to prosper

Afridi's Royals defeated Sehwag's Diamonds in both the Ice Cricket matches.

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St Moritz’s recently witnessed the cricket match being played on ice featuring some of the world cricket’s retired stalwarts. Amidst the Swiss alps, Shahid Afridi-led side Royals faced off Virender Sehwag’s Diamonds for two T20 matches and it was the Royals who emerged victorious in both the matches.

Both the teams were full of yesteryear stars such as Zaheer Khan, Lasith Malinga, Mahela Jayawardene, Michael Hussey, Shoaib Akhtar, Graeme Smith, Jacques Kallis among others.

It was certainly a unique experience for all these recently retired cricketers and also for the fans.

"It's a beautiful place and It's a very new experience. It's something that we have never seen. All the players are loving the experience," former Indian pacer Zaheer Khan told Sports Tak.

"It's a terrific experience, playing in the snow. I loved the experience and would love to comeback," said former Australia batsman Michael Hussey.

"It will be a great move to include cricket in Olympics. T20 will be a good format. Short and sharp and also very entertaining," added Hussey.

It was earlier reported that the top stars featuring in the ice cricket challenge will be paid in the range of $40,000-50,000 for two games while the others will get something between $20,000-30,000. For the retired and semi-retired cricketers, it is certainly a win-win situation.

"There was a big crowd and they got their money's worth as the matches were pretty interesting. There were big sixes, fours and wickets. So everything was there," said former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar.

"The cricket we witnessed was very competitive," said former Pakistan all-rounder Abdul Razzaq.

Ice cricket was extra special for Indo-Pak fans who are deprived of watching the arch-rivals play on a regular basis.

"India and Pakistan are not playing enough international cricket, so ice cricket is compensating for it," said former Pakistan captain Afridi.

"We can see cricket fans are present here from all over the world and the presence of Indian and Pakistan cricket stars have brought them to ice cricket,” he added.

Shahid Afridi's Royals XI:

Shahid Afridi (Pakistan), Shoaib Akhtar (Pakistan), Abdul Razzaq (Pakistan), Jacques Kallis (South Africa), Graeme Smith (South Africa), Daniel Vettori (New Zealand), Nathan McCullum (New Zealand), Grant Elliott (New Zealand), Monty Panesar (England), Owais Shah (England), Matt Prior (England), Aidan Andrews (Switzerland)

Virender Sehwag's Diamonds XI:

Virender Sehwag (India), Zaheer Khan (India), Mohammad Kaif (India), Ajit Agarkar (India), Mahela Jayawardene (Sri Lanka), Lasith Malinga (Sri Lanka), Tillakaratne Dilshan (Sri Lanka), Michael Hussey (Australia), Andrew Symonds (Australia), Mithun Manhas (India), Ramesh Powar (India), Rohan Jain (Switzerland)


By Salman Anjum - 11 Feb, 2018

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