Shaheen Shah Afridi (Urdu: شاهین شاہ آفریدی, Pashto: شاهین شاہ اپریدی; born 6 April 2000) is a Pakistani professional cricketer who plays as a fast bowler for the Pakistan national cricket team. He made his international debut for Pakistan in April 2018 and his Test match debut for the team in December 2018.
Shaheen Afridi in 2018
|Full name||Shaheen Shah Afridi|
|Born||6 April 2000|
Landi Kotal, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan
|Height||6 ft 6 in (198 cm)|
|Relations||Riaz Afridi (brother)|
Yasir Afridi (cousin)
|Test debut (cap 236)||3 December 2018 v New Zealand|
|Last Test||21 August 2020 v England|
|ODI debut (cap 218)||21 September 2018 v Afghanistan|
|Last ODI||5 July 2019 v Bangladesh|
|T20I debut (cap 78)||3 April 2018 v West Indies|
|Last T20I||1 September 2020 v England|
|Domestic team information|
|2017||Khan Research Laboratories|
|2018–present||Lahore Qalandars (squad no. 10)|
|2019/20||Northern (squad no. 10)|
|2020||Hampshire (squad no. 40)|
Source: Cricinfo, 5 October 2020
In 2017, Afridi was noted as a 6-foot 6 inch 17-year-old Pakistani fast-bowling talent who can bowl 90 mph and also for his big-hitting ability. He considers himself an all-rounder and seeks to excel in bowling, batting and fielding. In August 2018, he was one of thirty-three players to be awarded a central contract for the 2018–19 season by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB).
Early life and careerEdit
Shaheen belongs to the Zakhakhel Afridi tribe of the Pashtuns. He grew up in Landi Kotal, a town in Khyber District, Pakistan, on the border with Afghanistan. He is the youngest of seven brothers; his eldest brother, 15 years his senior, is Riaz Afridi who played a solitary Test match for Pakistan in 2004. Shaheen started his cricket career from the Tatara Ground in Landi Kotal, which is named after the nearby Tatara hills.
Riaz Afridi introduced Shaheen to hard-ball cricket at the FATA Under-16 trials in 2015, with Shaheen having played only tennis-ball cricket until then. Success at this level led Shaheen to selection for the Under-16 tour of Australia in November 2015 where he played his part with four wickets in the 2–1 victories in the One-Day and Twenty20 series.
Domestic and T20 careerEdit
In December 2016, Afridi was included in the Pakistan Under-19 cricket team selected for the 2016 Under-19 Asia Cup held in Sri Lanka. He took 3 wickets for 27 runs in Pakistan's nine wickets win over Singapore in their opening match of the U-19 Asia Cup.
In early September 2017, Afridi signed a two-year contract with Dhaka Dynamites, a major Bangladesh Premier League franchise. Later he made his first-class debut for Khan Research Laboratories in the 2017–18 Quaid-e-Azam Trophy on 26 September 2017. In the second innings of the match, he took 8 wickets for 39 runs, the best figures by a Pakistani bowler on first-class debut.
In December 2017, he was named in Pakistan's squad for the 2018 Under-19 Cricket World Cup. He was the leading wicket-taker for Pakistan in the tournament, with 12 wickets. Following Pakistan's matches in the tournament, the International Cricket Council (ICC) named Afridi as the rising star of the squad.
He made his Twenty20 debut for Lahore Qalandars in the 2018 Pakistan Super League (PSL) on 23 February 2018. The following month in the PSL, during Lahore's match with the Multan Sultans, Afridi took five wickets for four runs. Lahore won the fixture by 6 wickets and Afridi was named the player of the match.
In July 2019, he was selected to play for the Rotterdam Rhinos in the inaugural edition of the Euro T20 Slam cricket tournament. However, the following month the tournament was cancelled. In December 2019, it was announced that Afridi will play for Hampshire County Cricket Club in the 2020 t20 Blast in England. In September 2020, Hampshire confirmed his participation in the 2020 t20 Blast, and announced that he will be available after fulfilling his national duties. On 20 September 2020, in the final round of group matches in the t20 Blast, Afridi took a hat-trick and four wickets in four balls, finishing with match figures of 6/19 from his four overs. On 2 October 2020, in the 2020–21 National T20 Cup, Afridi took his second five-wicket haul in three T20 games, with figures of 5/20 from his four overs. Three days later, Afridi took another five-wicket haul, with 5/21 in the match against Sindh.
In March 2018, he was named in Pakistan's Twenty20 International (T20I) squad for their series against the West Indies. He made his T20I debut for Pakistan against the West Indies on 3 April 2018. In September 2018, he was named in Pakistan's One Day International (ODI) squad for the 2018 Asia Cup. He made his ODI debut for Pakistan against Afghanistan on 21 September 2018.
In April 2019, he was named in Pakistan's squad for the 2019 Cricket World Cup. On 5 July 2019, in the match against Bangladesh, Shaheen became the youngest bowler to take a five-wicket haul in a World Cup match, finishing with figures of 6/35. These were also the best bowling figures by a bowler for Pakistan in a World Cup match. Following the World Cup, the International Cricket Council (ICC) named Afridi as the rising star of the squad.
In June 2020, he was named in a 29-man squad for Pakistan's tour to England during the COVID-19 pandemic. In July, he was shortlisted in Pakistan's 20-man squad for the Test matches against England.
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