Watch: Fit-again Shaheen Afridi tests Babar Azam in engaging nets duel, makes him play and miss ahead of PSL 2023 face-off
Watch: Babar Azam and Shaheen Shah Afridi briefly locked horns with each other at the National High Performance Centre in Lahore days before the start of the 2023 Pakistan Super League.
Across an eight-ball stretch, Afridi cranked up the pace to challenge the Pakistan national captain, who will lead the Peshawar Zalmi in the eighth edition of the T20 tournament. Babar replaced Wahab Riaz as the franchise skipper in December. Shaheen, meanwhile, will be captaining Lahore Qalandars, champions of the 2022 season.
Shaheen hasn’t played a competitive game since November after hobbling out of the T20 World Cup final in Melbourne, having flared up an existing knee problem that took him months to recover from. He missed the two home Test match series’ against England and New Zealand, but is now eyeing a full-fledged return in the PSL.
Bowling to Babar with his usual length run-up, Shaheen got one to fly past the bat and made another take the Pakistan captain’s outside edge. In the brief duel, Babar unleashed a couple of compact drives as well, but given how the brief session was, Shaheen probably would have been the happier of the two.
Babar recently won the ICC Men’s ODI Cricketer of the Year and the Men’s Cricketer of the Year for 2022. Shaheen had won the Sir Garfield Sobers Trophy for the latter in 2021.
The two players are set to face each other off on February 26 and March 7. Here’s the complete schedule for PSL 2023.
Watch the Babar v Shaheen duel here:
. @iShaheenAfridi vs @babarazam258
How excited are you for 2⃣6⃣Feb and 7⃣ March in #HBLPSL8 ?#sochnabemanahai #SabSitarayHumaray #ICCAwards pic.twitter.com/1Z4VVqlk1m
— Lahore Qalandars (@lahoreqalandars) January 28, 2023