Shaheen Afridi set to blast off for Notts Outlaws
Nottingham: Pakistan cricket fast bowler Shaheen Afridi has said that he is excited to join the Notts Outlaws for the T20 Blast competition and is ready to perform well for the team.
The left-arm fast bowler – who was part of the Outlaws for this season – was speaking exclusively. Geo News At Trent Bridge Cricket Stadium, home of Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club.
Shaheen said Geo News That he has played in the T20 Blast before and really enjoyed his stint when he last played in the tournament.
“Really excited to drop in well with my new team. I have some good friends in the squad, some really good internationals. So as a player, I hope to play good cricket and do well. So that fans can enjoy it too.”
The Outlaws have a strong squad for their campaign in the Blast which includes players like Alex Hales, Ben Duckett, Colin Munro, Ollie Stone and Samit Patel.
Shaheen hopes that with such international players in the squad, the Outlaws can potentially win the tournament.
“Yes, we can be winners. Outlaw has a history of playing good exciting cricket. The beauty of Trent Bridge Stadium is that it is a high-scoring ground, so enjoy playing cricket here.”
Talking about his last performance in the T20 Blast three seasons ago when he took four wickets in four consecutive balls to outclass Hampshire Hawks, Shaheen said he always tries to give his best no matter what. Playing for any team and will try to repeat this performance. Robbers this season too.
“Results are in Allah’s hands. I can only try to continue my good performance. Be it bowling, batting or fielding, I give my best to the team and live up to the expectations of the fans from me.
World Cup preparations
Since there is not much cricket happening in Pakistan for the next few months, Shaheen will spend most of his time playing short-style cricket in England.
He will be with the Outlaws for the T20 Blast and then for The Hundred in August, Shaheen will join the Welsh Fire alongside fellow Pakistani and Lahore Qalandars fast bowler Haris Rauf.
Shaheen said that the advantage of such experience of playing cricket is that he can share the knowledge gained with other players when he returns home.
“We play with and against players who have performed at the international level as well. So it becomes easier to plan how I should bowl in front of them later.”
“So it’s good for personal experience but it will also help me improve my performance which will be very beneficial later in the World Cup preparations and to build a good pace before that.”
Shaheen vs. Zaman
The Outlaws take on Derbyshire Falcons in their tournament opener at Trent Bridge on Friday. Interestingly, the pace attack of both teams will be led by Shaheen for Outlaws and rookie Zaman Khan for Derbyshire.
They both play for Lahore Qalandars in the PSL where Shaheen is the captain and Zaman started the PSL under his leadership.
Talking about Zaman, Shaheen praised the youngster’s ability to bowl under pressure and described him as the best emerging player, a player he had never seen perform so well for the team before.
“Zaman Khan is a player who can win team matches and get man of the match award. And not just in the odd game but also at crucial times of matches. This guy has at least Five has done it for us. Or six times so far.”
“Especially, bowling at the death and the last over which is not easy at all in T20 games anywhere. He is a very talented player and the future of Pakistan cricket so I really hope he does that for his country. Will stay.”
Lahore Qalandars PDP
Shaheen also appreciated the player development program of Lahore Qalandars.
Lahore Qalandars are the champions of Pakistan Super League for the last two seasons, on both occasions Shaheen was the captain.
But their journey in the prestigious competition was not smooth for the first six years, during which they failed to even qualify for the knockout stages and often found themselves at the bottom of the table.
But despite all the criticism from pundits and fans alike, the management of Lahore Qalandars stuck to their vision of developing and promoting as much local talent as possible.
According to Shaheen, the management of Lahore Qalandars owes their success in the last two PSL seasons to their player development programme.
We had some big names in the Lahore Qalandars squad but the team can only win unless our own local players perform well.
“Recently, we had seven players in our squad who came through the franchise’s player development programme. Even though some of them didn’t get a chance to perform, it’s not like their cricket is over, they certainly are. will be developed and available in the future.
Those who got the opportunity took advantage of it and did really well,” said Shaheen.