Pakistan all-rounder Shahid Afridi is ready to lead Pakistan in their npower Test series opener against England at Trent Bridge after announcing that he intends to return to Test cricket.

Afridi retired from Test cricket four years ago and hasn’t played for the Test side since Pakistan’s last tour of England in 2006.

With Mohammad Yousuf, Younus Khan, Shoaib Malik and Rana Naved currently banned from international cricket, Afridi’s return could prove timely for the tourists and his standing in world cricket makes him a leading contender to inherit the captaincy.

"I am ready to play Test cricket because I feel my country needs me," said Afridi who has amassed 1683 runs and taken 47 wickets in 26 Tests.

"It has a very hard decision for me because I have wanted to devote more time to my family and playing all forms of the sport the year round has not been my cup of tea.

"That is why I avoided Test matches, but after speaking to my family I have decided to resume playing Test matches because it is the need of the time."

Pakistan face England at Trent Bridge from Thursday 29th July. Tickets are now on sale for the match with admission to days one, two and three starting at £35 for adults and £16 for juniors, reduced to £30 for adults and £13 for juniors on day four.

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