Karachi: The Pakistan Cricket Board moved tonight to end a controversy surrounding the captaincy of the national team and issued a statement by Shahid Afridi in which the all-rounder threw his weight behind struggling Misbah-ul- Haq as skipper for next year's World Cup.
The board said in a late night release that Afridi wanted to clarify his position with regard to certain comments attributed to him on the captaincy issue.
"Let me state at the very outset, Misbah is the best choice as Pakistan captain for the ICC World Cup 2015. I have always backed him to the optimum whenever I have played under him, just as he had when I had the honour to captain the Pakistan team," Afridi said.
"I have said this before, and I reiterate, that I shall continue to serve Pakistan Cricket and fully support Misbah to the best of my ability," he said in the statement.
"This is my final statement on the issue," he added.
A PCB official made it clear that the board had dropped plans to pursue a disciplinary case against Afridi for the remarks he made at the post match conference after the third ODI.
PCB Chairman Shaharyar Khan came down hard on Afridi earlier today at a press conference in Lahore blaming him for fanning an unnecessary controversy over the decision by Misbah-ul-Haq to step down as captain for the third ODI in Abu Dhabi.
Khan also reiterated full support for Misbah to continue as captain until the World Cup 2015.
At the post match conference, Afridi had fuelled speculations over whether Misbah had stepped down himself from the match or was pressurised into doing so by team management, which is said to favour Afridi to take over as the captain for the World Cup.
"The remarks made by Afridi are regretful and unfortunate and he should have avoided them. His remarks gave the indication something was wrong in the team," Khan said.
Khan said the board was also looking into the possibility of taking disciplinary action against Afridi for his remarks.
"We are looking at his remarks to see if he has violated the terms of his central contract and if this is so than we can take disciplinary action against him," he said.