Naseem Shah becomes Afghanistan's worst nightmare

The pacer scored the winning boundary

By Web Desk
August 24, 2023
Naseem Shah celebrates after scoring the winning runs — ESPN Cricinfo

Naseem Shah has done it again as he guided Pakistan to an important win — not for the first time — against Afghanistan during the second ODI in Hambantota on Thursday.

Shah came to bat when Pakistan needed 27 runs off 14 deliveries after Shaheen Shah Afridi lost his wicket for just four runs.

The 20-year-old had the biggest responsibility on his shoulders as he had to bat in the last over after Afghanistan’s Fazalhaq Farooq mankaded Shadab Khan who was on the non-striking end.

Naseem kept his cool and scored a four on the first ball over and then took a single. The pacer was partnered with Haris Rauf, who ran three runs after which Shah got the strike once again with Pakistan needing three off two.

Shah swung his bat to go for a hit but the ball got an outside edge and went all the way to the boundary.

From former cricketers to fans, Naseem gathered praise from everyone on social media.

Here is how current and former cricketers and other top personalities reacted

Here is how fans reacted on X (Twitter)

It must be noted that Pakistan defeated Afghanistan by one wicket after a thrilling encounter between the two teams.

Chasing the target of 301 runs, Pakistan lost Fakhar Zaman for just 52 runs but it was Imam-ul-Haq and skipper Babar Azam, who formed a 118-run stand and got their team in a dominant position.

After Babar departed, the wickets keep falling for the Green Shirts but Shadab Khan helped his side to get back in the game once again by scoring 48 off 35.

The last over had all the drama, as Fazalhaq was running towards the crease to bowl the ball, he mankaded Shadab, who was on the non-striking end.

But, after Shadab’s bizarre dismissal, Naseem took charge of Pakistan’s batting and led them to a victory.

Earlier in the first innings, Afghanistan opener Rahmanullah Gurbaz scored 151 runs to help Afghanistan post 300-5 in 50 overs.

After deciding to bat first, Afghanistan's opening pair of Gurbaz and Ibrahim Zadran scored 227 runs together. It was Afghanistan's second-highest ODI partnership.