One man that continues to make this his nation proud and helps establish a formidable bowling side of the Pakistan cricket team is Shaheen Afridi, a man single handedly gets Pakistan crucial wickets at crucial times during any match. The ace for the Pakistani bowling line-up, Shaheen Afridi, has had probably the best year of his Cricketing career so far and he added to his impeccable round of records another, by taking yet another five-wicket haul in the first ODI against Zimbabwe.
It is worth noting that Shaheen has now become the second bowler in history to pick up 15 wickets in a matter of just 3 matches, the only other bowler to achieve this feat was former fast bowler Waqar Younis, another Pakistan pacer known well for his skills with the bowl. Shaheen finished off with figures of 5 for 49 as Pakistan managed to defend the target of 282 against a rather well organized Zimbabwe side. The pacer started off the innings by picking up the wickets of the two openers in his very first spell, before coming back into the attack slashing three more wickets to earn him the match ball.
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Before this match, the last match the pacer was part of in a ODI match was back in the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup, where he was able to pick up 6 wickets and only conceding 35 runs in Pakistan’s last group stage match against an inform Bangladesh side. He took 4 wickets against Afghanistan in the previous match as well and in all, the pacer managed 15 wickets in his last three matches and became the joint record holder with Waqar Younis.
Shaheen Afridi has also become Pakistan’s leading wicket-taker after 20 matches, picking up 45 wickets and surpassing the likes of Hasan Ali who had taken 39 wickets in 20 matches. Shaheen’s ODI credentials speak for itself, the fast bowler has an average of 19.91 with 2 five-wicket hauls already to his name. Shaheen is also the leading wicket-taker in the T20 format this year as well, he has taken 44 wickets in 31 matches which is also a major feat in his career so far. He also finished as the leading wicket-taker in the recently concluded National T20 Cup and was part of the winning side who lifted the trophy, playing an integral role in the success of the team.