Pakistan’s veteran batsman Shoaib Malik made a triumphant comeback into the T20I team against Bangladesh in the first match which was played at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. This was the first T20I of the three-match series that was negotiated by both the cricket boards as Bangladesh was not ready to come to Pakistan.
Malik and his fellow senior Mohammad Hafeez were chosen by selector-cum-coach Misbah-ul-Haq despite voices of opposition and he showed his mettle immediately with a sedated knock of 58* in a tricky chase in Lahore. Bangladesh had made 141 runs batting first with openers Tamim Iqbal (39) and Mohammad Naim (43) being the top-scorers. In reply, skipper Babar Azam fell for a duck, his first in T20Is ever.
Shoaib Malik becomes the first Pakistani player to play in four different decades
Former captain Shoaib Malik took the initiative in the chase and kept anchoring one end and finished the game brilliantly. Incidentally, this was Malik’s first game in 2020, which made him the first Pakistani player to play in four different decades. He has made his international debut against the West Indies in 1999 and is still going strong.
In the post-match press conference, one of the journalists asked a hilarious question to Malik with regards to coach Misbah-ul-Haq. “Shoaib, you spoke about grooming youngsters in the team, which is the responsibility of a senior player. So, you are even more senior than your coach (Misbah-ul-Haq), will you groom him as well?” asked a reporter.
The fact is true that Malik is senior to Misbah, as the current coach had made his Pakistan debut in 2001 in Tests. Malik was poised and graceful in his reply but kept the tone light. “There is no one in the world who can say that he has learnt everything. Sachin Tendulkar couldn’t say that or other people couldn’t say that they have learnt anything. The learning process never ends. A lot of cricketers and coaches have come and gone, a lot happened but the learning process never stopped,” he said.
Here is the video of the hilarious moment:
— muzamilasif (@muzamilasif4) January 24, 2020
The right-handed all-rounder recently said that if he manages to perform well for Pakistan in the T20 World Cup in Australia, he might continue playing international cricket beyond the tournament.
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