Young Shaheen Afridi: The Future of Pakistan Bowling Phenomenon

Young Shaheen Afridi: The Future of Pakistan Bowling Phenomenon

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01 Mar 2022
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AFTER guiding the Lahore Qalandars to their first Pakistan Super League victory, Shaheen Shah Afridi, like his fellow Pakistan teammates, faces a swift transition from the glitz and glam of the country’s top T20 event to the hard work of international Test cricket.

After considerable discussion about whether or not they would come, Australia arrived for their first visit to Pakistan in 24 years.

On a ‘Super Sunday’ for Pakistan cricket, Australia arrived in Islamabad early in the morning, shortly before the conclusion of the country’s maiden PSL season, which began just before midnight in Lahore. 

It was already Monday when Shaheen grabbed the trophy as the Qalandars finally experienced victory after six seasons of failures and a last heartache – in 2020 — This was, astonishingly, Shaheen’s first season as Qalandars captain and he played the role like an experienced one.

The current ICC Cricketer of the Year, who is 21 years old, represents Pakistan cricket’s future, having established himself as the national team’s fast bowling spearhead. 

He, along with Pakistan’s newest crop of globally recognised stars such as skipper Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan — who led runners-up Multan Sultans in Sunday’s PSL final — will now look to inspire the national team in the three-Test series against Australia.

The series begins this week in Rawalpindi and will be followed by matches in Karachi and Lahore. Three One-Day Internationals and a Twenty20 match will follow, with Islamabad United skipper Shadab Khan joining the three.

The PSL has shaped these young players into leaders, improving the team’s leadership attribute. That was obvious in Pakistan’s impressive performances at the conclusion of last year, particularly their journey to the Twenty20 World Cup semi-finals, when they were defeated by eventual champions Australia.

In a news conference following Australia’s arrival, Test captain Pat Cummins was eager to point out that an entire generation of Australian cricketers had passed up the opportunity to play in Pakistan. 

However, with international cricket coming to the country in a hurry, with New Zealand and England set to visit later this year, excellent performances will undoubtedly help Pakistan make up for lost time.

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