Shahid Afridi's over two decade playing career has seen many highs and lows. The former Pakistan all-rounder will always be seen as one of the finest players to have played for his country. However, Afridi, in recent times, has been grabbing eyeballs for off the field reasons -- the latest being remarks on his daughters in his recently released tell-all autobiography -- "Game Changer".
Afridi shockingly in his book said that he does not give permission to his daughters to play outdoor sports, saying "feminists can say whatever they want about my decision".
The former Pakistan cricketer -- who is a father to four daughters named Ansha, Ajwa, Asmara and Aqsa -- said his stance was motivated by "social and religious reasons".
"It's for social and religious reasons that I've made this decision regarding my daughters not competing in public sporting activities and their mother agrees with me," wrote Afridi.
"The feminists can say what they want; as a conservative Pakistani father, I've made my decision," he added.
However, his comments about his four daughters -- who are aged between 10 and 20 years old -- may have proven to be the most galling to the public with social media users labeling the all-rounder a "misogynist" and "hypocrite".
"Afridi is no better than a typical middle-aged average Pakistani guy, who wouldn't mind hanging out with someone else's daughters but would balk if his own did the same," tweeted Salman Siddiq.
#ShahidAfridi is no better than a typical middle-aged average Pakistani guy, who wouldn't mind hanging out with someone else's daughters but would balk if his own did the same(See pic below) Unfortunate statement given Pakistan is a country with its own women's cricket team. https://t.co/gd8oUTeGbX— Salman Siddiqui (@salmansid) May 9, 2019
"His daughters, his decisions? Really?? So the girls' voices and choices don't matter? Not even when they're adults? Because #FatherHasSpoken," added Asha Bedar on Twitter.
In the book, the cricketer also unleashed withering criticism against old teammates -- including erstwhile World Cup captain Imran Khan -- and admitted to being slightly older than previously reported, drawing accusations he was not the youngest player to set the record for scoring 100 runs in an international.
Pakistani author Bina Shah also roasted Afridi, telling the BBC his decision was an example of "Pakistani macho culture that says I am the father, I can say what my daughters are going to do and not do, and there is not a thing that you can do to stop me."
Afridi, however pushed back at the criticism and tweeted, "I don't judge anyone or meddle in people's life."
"I expect the same too from others. May Allah bless my daughters and daughters/women all over the world! Let people be. My daughters are very precious to me! My life revolves around them."
I don't judge anyone for what they do or meddle in people's life. I expect the same too from others. May Allah bless my daughters and daughters/women all over the world! Let people be. @fifiharoon @Independent— Shahid Afridi (@SAfridiOfficial) May 12, 2019
Afridi retired from professional cricket in 2016 but he continues to be a mainstay on Pakistani television, frequently starring in commercials while also attending high-profile sporting events.
(With AFP inputs)