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Mehidy Hasan Miraz and Litton Das are on their way to becoming Bangladesh’s next generation of match-winners.



Mehidy Hasan and Litton Das

R Ashwin smashed Mehidy Hasan Miraz for a six and two fours, leaving him frustrated. Those were the final hits of the Dhaka Test, and he was visibly disappointed as he collected his cap from the umpire.

Mehidy was the one who turned this game into a contest, taking 5 for 63, but for the first time in his career, this combative Bangladesh off spinner was defeated after picking up a five-for in the fourth inning.

He had bowled 18 overs in two days and was only taken out of the attack when Shakib Al Hasan realized he needed to be more creative in order to break the eight-wicket stand between Ashwin and Shreyas Iyer. Instead of creating another opportunity, Mehidy was on the receiving end of the boundary that signaled India’s narrowest win over Bangladesh in Test history.

Mehidy was distraught. Shreyas, with whom he had sparred throughout the series, noticed this and tapped the bowler on the chest, as if to say, ‘don’t feel so bad, man. You gave it everything you had.’ It was a nice addition. Mehidy also received a long hug from Rishabh Pant, whom he defeated three times in two matches. And a gift from the man he defeated on the third evening, Virat Kohli, who presented the offspinner with an autographed ODI jersey.

Bangladesh Team

Litton Das said on the third evening that Mehidy was at the best of his abilities in both white- and red-ball formats, proving himself to be a key player in Bangladesh’s setup.

“He was always good at bowling, and now he’s getting better at batting,” Litton said. “He got a hundred points ahead of me in this series, so we have to applaud him. In our team, he is an excellent all-around player. We had a difficult first match because we had to switch from white to red ball in two [four] days. It was difficult for them as well. The same is true for bowlers who must bowl for extended periods of time. I, too, had difficulty switching between the two. Miraz is always a key player in my opinion.”

Litton, who led Bangladesh in ODIs in the absence of the injured Tamim Iqbal, had an interesting time as well. Litton’s innings against India in the T20 World Cup displayed his progress as a batter. He had a rough patch in the ODIs, but his captaincy continued to stand out in that he refused to go it alone. Given the Bangladesh dressing room culture, where the senior-junior divide is strong, it was a small but significant gesture.

On the third afternoon in Dhaka, Litton’s 73 kept Bangladesh in the game. When his team was still trailing by 17 runs in the second innings, he chose to counterattack, but that is the type of bold decision-making that Bangladesh needs from this generation of cricketers. Litton and Mehidy have demonstrated that they are proactive when the chips are down, particularly against larger teams like India, and the example they’ve set is inspiring their teammates to do the same.

Zakir Hasan made an impressive transition from the A team, scoring a Test century on debut in Chattogram and a gritty half-century in Dhaka. Zakir had a taste of international cricket in 2018 before being sent back into the wilderness. The 24-year-old has built a substantial career in first-class cricket without ever catching the attention of selectors – that is, until last month, when he made 173 against a very strong India A team.

Mehidy Hasan

Shakib was impressed by Zakir’s demeanor during the two Tests. “He is extremely mature. Excellent temperament for Test cricket. This was the type of mixture we were looking for. He is capable of filling a critical role. It’s only the beginning, but I hope he has more good innings for Bangladesh.

“Zakir has been around for quite a while. He has played 70 [71] first-class matches, as evidenced by his cricket. It is not the same as someone who is 19 or 20. I’d like to see more players like him who can provide better service in the next 7 to 10 years.”

Bangladesh has another talented opener waiting for a second chance, and Shakib made it a point to remind Mahmudul Hasan Joy of what he needed to do to get back in. “Joy is present in the system. He needs to score runs in the A team to get more opportunities. I want him to seize those opportunities and play 100 Tests for Bangladesh.”

Shakib also believes that Bangladesh’s pace attack is developing into a formidable force across all formats. “We’re getting better, but we’re not playing consistently well. The disappointing aspect of both Tests was our first-inning batting. Among the three spinners, we have more than 500 wickets. We’ll soon have fast bowlers with 70-80 wickets. We’ll have five strong bowlers who can shut down any team.”

With the pace attack in place, enough quality spinners in the system, and young players performing well, the Bangladesh cricket team is in good shape. Shakib, Tamim, and Mushfiqur Rahim are all nearing the end of their international careers, so the next generation needed to step up. Litton and Mehidy have certainly done that this year, and while things didn’t go exactly as planned for either, there’s no denying they’re in it for the long haul.


1000 Runs in ODIs: Kohli’s Cricket Legacy




1000 Runs in ODIs: Kohli's Cricket Legacy

On Thursday, November 2, Virat Kohli achieved an accomplishment. He became the batsman to surpass 1000 runs in ODIs in 2023, following in the footsteps of Shubman Gill and Rohit Sharma. Not that,. He also joined Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, and Pathum Nissanka as the fourth players to achieve this impressive record in the 50-over format within the same year.

Stepping into History with 1000 Runs in ODIs

Virat Kohli celebrating 1000 Runs in ODIs with a jump on the field

Entering the realm of history, Kohli’s unwavering determination and exceptional skills were put on display during his match in 2023. Notably, the cricket maestro, now 34 years old, made an indelible impact by surpassing Sachin Tendulkar‘s record, securing the most number of years with 1000 runs in ODIs. Kohli’s consistent ability to perform at such an exceptional level has been a defining characteristic of his illustrious career, as he had previously achieved this monumental milestone in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018, and 2019, before accomplishing it once again in the present year of 2023.

An Unforgettable Journey

In an intense World Cup 2023 clash against Sri Lanka at the renowned Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, Virat Kohli’s pursuit of this historic milestone was realized with an impressive 34 runs. Despite facing challenges, including a rare duck against England at the Ekana Stadium in Lucknow, his overall performance throughout the year has been nothing short of spectacular.

Kohli’s memorable journey was highlighted by an unbeaten century during India’s triumphant seven-wicket victory against Bangladesh at the Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) Stadium in Pune. Adding to his illustrious record, he solidified his stature with a brilliant 95 runs, making a significant contribution to India’s thrilling four-wicket win over New Zealand led by Tom Latham at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) Stadium in Pune.

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Shaheen Shah Afridi: Fastest to 100 ODI Wickets




Shah Afridi celebrating a wicket

Shaheen Shah Afridi, on Tuesday, October 31, achieved a remarkable feat, becoming the third fastest bowler to secure 100 wickets in ODIs. His outstanding performance during Pakistan’s World Cup 2023 match against Bangladesh at the renowned Eden Gardens in Kolkata led to this historic accomplishment.

A Landmark Moment

In the thrilling encounter, Shaheen clinched his 100th wicket in only his 51st match, dismissing Tigers’ opening batter Tanzid Hasan Tamim. The left-arm fast bowler displayed exceptional skill as he struck Tamim on the pads, prompting the on-field umpire to raise his finger. Despite Tamim’s referral to the third umpire using the Decision Review System (DRS), the replays confirmed the ball crashing into the stumps, upholding the on-field decision. Bangladesh lost their first wicket with the scoreboard reading 0 in just 0.5 overs.

Surpassing Preceding Records

Shaheen Shah Afridi not only secured this feat in record time but also outshone the accomplishments of esteemed bowlers preceding him. He surpassed the record of the fastest pacer, previously held by Mitchell Starc, who attained the milestone in August 2016 during an ODI against Sri Lanka at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.

Legacy of Excellence

Moreover, Shaheen shattered the long-standing record held by Saqlain Mushtaq, becoming the fastest Pakistani bowler to claim 100 wickets in ODIs. Saqlain had set this record on May 12, 1997, during an ODI against Sri Lanka in Gwalior. It is notable that among the Pakistani fast bowlers, the accomplished Shaheen Shah Afridi follows in the footsteps of the legendary Waqar Younis, who achieved the 100-wicket mark back in February 1993 against Zimbabwe in Sharjah.

Beyond ODIs

Demonstrating his prowess beyond ODIs, Shaheen has made significant contributions in Tests and T20Is as well. Since his debut in 2018, he has garnered 105 wickets in Tests and 64 wickets in T20Is. His exceptional journey began with a strong performance in the U19 World Cup in New Zealand. Notably, he played a pivotal role in Lahore Qalandars’ consecutive victories in the Pakistan Super League (PSL).

A Testament to Talent and Dedication

Shaheen Shah Afridi’s rapid rise to 100 ODI wickets within 51 matches underlines his exceptional talent and unwavering dedication to the sport. As he continues to leave an indelible mark on the cricketing world, his journey serves as an inspiration for aspiring cricketers worldwide. With his remarkable achievements, Afridi has solidified his place in the annals of cricket history, etching his name as one of Pakistan’s most formidable and promising fast bowlers.

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ICC World Cup: Shoaib Akhtar says, ‘Mai India ki tareef kyu na karu’




Shoaib Akhtar, former Pakistani fast bowler

Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar has recently expressed admiration for India’s dominant performance in the ongoing 2023 ICC World Cup. With India securing victories in all six matches, Akhtar highlighted the team’s exceptional display across various aspects of the game. Although the recent batting performance against England in Lucknow was relatively modest, India’s fierce bowling attack, led by Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah, proved instrumental in securing a remarkable win. This triumph not only solidified India’s leading position on the points table but also exacerbated England’s struggles in the tournament, leaving them virtually eliminated.

Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, and Jasprit Bumrah laughing together on the field

India’s Remarkable Bowling Transformation

In his analysis, Akhtar emphasized the transformative impact of Shami’s inclusion in India’s playing eleven following Hardik Pandya’s injury. Acknowledging Shami’s outstanding performances against New Zealand and England, Akhtar credited India’s ability to win matches through their bowling prowess, showcasing a shift from their traditional reliance on batting strength. He commended the collective effort of the Indian bowling unit, particularly recognizing the strategic brilliance of fast bowler Bumrah.

The Indian cricket team is standing for the national anthem at the ICC World Cup

India’s Path to World Cup Glory

Looking ahead, Akhtar voiced his confidence in India’s potential to secure their third ODI World Cup trophy, highlighting the team’s upcoming matches against Sri Lanka, South Africa, and the Netherlands. Expressing optimism, he emphasized the significance of maintaining their unbeaten streak en route to the final, setting the stage for a potential historic ICC World Cup victory. However, Akhtar cautioned against compromising the successful bowling unit once Pandya returns to full fitness, warning against the potential detriment of a partially fit Pandya’s inclusion at the expense of a bowler.

Akhtar’s Praise for India and its Response to Criticism

Addressing skepticism surrounding his praise for the Indian team, Akhtar reiterated the exceptional nature of India’s performance, particularly in their ability to defend a modest total with a significant margin of victory. Undeterred by criticism, Akhtar reaffirmed his admiration for India’s exceptional cricketing prowess, urging acknowledgment and appreciation of their commendable achievements.

Virat Kohli gives a hand gesture on the field during a match

Shoaib Akhtar’s Perspective on Virat Kohli

Shifting focus, Akhtar’s history of praise extends beyond team performances to individual players, notably including former Indian team captain Virat Kohli. Reminiscing on Kohli’s resilience during a challenging phase in his career, Akhtar highlighted the pivotal role played by Kohli’s consistent century-scoring performances, leading to India’s victories. Recognizing Kohli’s contribution to the team’s success, Akhtar emphasized the significance of Kohli’s monumental centuries during crucial chases, solidifying his status as a crucial asset for the Indian cricket team.

In a comparison between Kohli and the legendary Sachin Tendulkar, Akhtar acknowledged Tendulkar’s status as one of the greatest batsmen while highlighting the challenges Tendulkar faced as a captain. Drawing parallels, Akhtar expressed confidence in Kohli’s eventual resurgence, expecting him to return to his prolific scoring form once he finds his equilibrium.

In summary, Akhtar’s acknowledgment of India’s exceptional performance and his recognition of individual players’ contributions underscore the team’s formidable presence in the 2023 ICC World Cup, setting the stage for a potential historic triumph in the coming days.

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