Pakistan batting analyst Matthew Hayden says that playing Shaheen Afridi is a different type of a challenge for hitter, considering the velocity he creates. Hayden said that Afridi’s deliveries to eliminate Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul on Sunday were the finest he has seen in the past five weeks.
Shaheen Afridi was the architect of Pakistan’s first ever triumph against India in the annals of T20 WCs since 2007 on Sunday, October 24. He initially sent back Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul in the powerplay and afterwards became the first Pakistan bowler ever to dismiss Virat Kohli in T20 World Cup.
He constantly averaged over 140 kmph during his opening stint, which included two full inswinging deliveries – the first which caught Rohit leg-before and the second piercing KL Rahul’s resistance to strike the timber. Hayden poured accolades on Afridi, and noted that facing someone with his speed is a different cup of tea.
“They (the Indian hitters) have been facing 130km/h deliveries for the last month throughout the IPL. It’s a different cup of tea when you are facing someone sprinting and bowling at Shaheen Shah Afridi’s pace,” Hayden told Fox Cricket following Pakistan’s 10-wicket triumph.
“They were the greatest two balls that I’ve seen in five weeks. A quick in-swinging yorker and the confidence that it takes to bowl that delivery against Rohit Sharma with the new ball is impressive.
“I don’t think I have not seen the ball hitting Rahul’s centre of the bat in five weeks and then he gets that delivery. That was like the two punch combo that left India on the backfoot in the powerplay.”
The Babar Azam-led team went on to earn their second win of the tournament against New Zealand on in Sharjah on Tuesday. They will take on Afghanistan in Dubai on Friday, October 29.