Shahid Afridi is one player who has fans all over the world: Rashid Khan
Rashid met Afridi and was over the moon.
Published - May 21, 2019 7:58 pm | Updated - May 21, 2019 7:58 pm
Rashid Khan has completely dominated the white-ball format in the last couple of years. He has not only excelled in the international arena but has also delivered for different T20 franchises while plying his trade in Australia, England, India, the Caribbean and other nations. In fact, it would not be wrong to say that Rashid is the flag-bearer for the rise of wrist-spinners in the game once again. He has made a huge mark with his leg-spin and has perhaps inspired a number of bowlers of this generation that they can excel too.
But very few know that the Afghanistan superstar who is making lives difficult for batsmen with his deliveries started his career as an opening batsman before turning into a bowler. Rashid’s batting has made the news in recent times. From tearing away Kolkata Knight Riders with his whirlwind knock in the last IPL’s playoff to his helicopter shots, Rashid has shown he is very much capable with the bat too.
He has now revealed that former Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi inspired him to start as a batsman. Rashid fondly remembered the thrill he got whenever Afridi came out to bat before accepting that he too wanted to bat like the allrounder. The leg-spinner, whose bowling is also very much inspired by Afridi, said that while the Pakistan star did not score too many tons, the thrill he provided was enough to make him a fan favourite.
“He is one player who has fans all over the world,” Rashid told ESPNCricinfo. “You don’t get such players every day. Check his record, he doesn’t have many centuries, but whenever he arrived, he would hit four-five-six sixes, entertain and leave. That is why he had fans. You had to become his fan,” he added.
Rashid meets Afridi
Rashid Khan finally met his idol during the Bangladesh Premier League in 2016-17. Afridi still remembers the meeting as he opened up about it. The Pakistan star said that the two did not talk much about cricket but Rashid was extremely happy to meet him.
“As such, we didn’t talk about anything, in particular, even cricket or bowling, but I remember how happy he was to meet me,” recalled Afridi.
Meanwhile, Rashid is currently gearing up for the World Cup. Afghanistan are widely considered as one of the dark horses and Rashid will be looking to make his mark at the global stage. They open the World Cup campaign against defending champions Australia on June 1.