Watch: Pakistan’s premier swing bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi rattled the Northern (Pakistan) top-order with his in-swing in a mesmeric double-wicket first over.
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa sit at the top of the Pakistan National T20 cup tables, and a big reason is the bowling of their star, Shaheeh Shah Afridi, who has picked up 12 wickets in the tournament so far, the most by anyone. He was involved in a memorable pair of duels with Babar Azam earlier in the competition.
His lethal display with the new ball today was just another example.
The very first ball of the game, delivered by Shaheen, swung in late into the legs of Nasir Nawaz, who took a single by placing it into the leg-side. The commentators were discussing how Shaheen had an off-day in his previous match, when Khurram Manzoor took runs off him, when the left-arm quick bowled a beautiful delivery to opener Ali Imran.
The in-swinging yorker struck Imran on his legs, and the umpire raised his finger. The ball was pitched up and Imran had little time to react at Shaheen’s pace.
Next in was the youngster Haider Ali, who had smashed 91* off 53 balls earlier in the week to gun down a chase of 201. Shaheen again tried to swing the ball in but the ball flicked the batter’s pad and was taken by the keeper, Mohammad Rizwan.
The next ball was on the mark again, Afridi pitching it fuller, and the ball swinging in to destroy Haider’s stumps.
His devastating spell left Northern reeling at 1-2 after merely four balls had been bowled in the game. Though Mohammad Nawaz and Shadab Khan brought the team back into the game, Afridi finished the innings with impressive figures of 2-30.
You can watch the sizzling two-wicket Shaheen burst here
Shaheen Shah Afridi is extraordinary 🔥pic.twitter.com/shieRfdUpc
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) October 3, 2021