Pakistan teenager Shaheen Afridi credits PSL experience for sensational display against Australia

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The Pakistan starlet picked up three wickets on Thursday.

Pakistan teenager Shaheen Shah Afridi was on fire on Thursday in his side’s 45-run demolition of Australia in the T20 tri-series in Harare.

The 18-year-old picked up his first international wicket for Pakistan on the way to returning with figures of 3-37 in Pakistan’s big win at the Harare Sports Club.

After Pakistan had put up 194-7 on the board, their bowlers shone as Australia were restricted to 149-7 in their 20 overs.

The left-arm pacer showed terrific skills with the ball in picking up the big wickets of the in-form Aaron Finch, D’Arcy Short and Glenn Maxwell to pave the way for a comprehensive Pakistan victory.

After the victory, the left-armed pacer revealed that he had been planning the wickets of Finch and Maxwell since Wednesday.

“Since yesterday I was planning to get the wickets of those two players (Finch and Maxwell) which is why I am glad it worked out perfectly,” he said.

Short's stumps are rattled by Afridi.

Short’s stumps are rattled by Afridi.

The youngster had credited his experience of playing in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) for the Lahore Qalandars earlier this year for his mature display on Thursday.

“After PSL, I don’t feel any pressure going into an international game and it aids in calming my nerves,” the teenager said.

The young prodigy also has fond memories of his dismissal of his namesake Shahid Afridi during the PSL although he clarified that the two share no direct relation.

“I was pleased to pick up his wicket during a PSL match as he is such a big star in international cricket. I was hit for a six before on the ball before I dismissed him, which made the moment more special,” the pacer stated.

“Although we hail from the same community, we are not direct relatives,” he added.

Thursday’s clash against Australia was only the second international appearance for the young Afridi after he made his Pakistan debut in a T20I against the West Indies in April this year.

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MS Dhoni on the verge of 500th international appearance ahead of second T20 between England and India

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Dhoni will make his 500th appearance in India colours on Friday.

The records keep tumbling for MS Dhoni these days with the India wicketkeeper-batsman set to create another one when he takes the field for his side’s second T20 against England on Friday.

During the first T20 between the two sides at Manchester on Tuesday, Dhoni had overtaken Pakistan’s Kamran Akmal to become the wicketkeeper to have affected the most number of stumpings in T20Is. The 36-year-old’s two stumpings on the day had taken his tally to 33 and one ahead of Akmal (32).

On Friday, Dhoni will play his 500th international game for India, making him only the third player in the country’s history to do so and ninth overall.

Only Sachin Tendulkar (664) and Rahul Dravid (509) have breached that special landmark so far for India. Dhoni’s 499 previous appearances for the country include 90 Tests, 318 ODIs and 91 T20Is.

Dhoni is set to join an exclusive club.

Dhoni is set to join an exclusive club.

The Ranchi-born man made his debut for India all the way back in 2004 in an ODI clash against Bangladesh. The right-hander has now scored over 16, 000 international runs across all formats although he called time on his Test career in 2014.

The Indian stalwart will join an exclusive club which includes the likes of Mahela Jayawardane, Kumar Sangakkara, Sanath Jayasuriya, Ricky Ponting, Shahid Afridi and Jaques Kallis apart from Tendulkar and Dravid.

India currently lead the three-match T20 series 1-0 after their comprehensive eight-wicket win at Old Trafford. The second T20 between the two sides will be held at Sophia Gardens in Cardiff on Friday (20:30).

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Shannon Gabriel puts West Indies on verge of innings win against Bangladesh after Kraigg Brathwaite's century

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Gabriel (R) struck four times on the second day.

Kraigg Brathwaite‘s century and four wickets from Shannon Gabriel helped put West Indies on the verge of a crushing innings victory over Bangladesh.

The tourists – bowled out for just 43 on day one of the first Test in Antigua – trail by 301 runs after slipping to 62 for six in their second innings.

The Windies, led by Brathwaite’s seventh Test hundred, were in complete control at North Sound and secured a 363-run first innings advantage, before their attack quickly set about completing the job.

Pace bowler Gabriel had Tamim Iqbal caught by Shai Hope off the fourth delivery of the third over, before bowling Mominul Haque for a duck two balls later.

Kemar Roach, who wrecked Bangladesh in the first innings with five wickets in 12 deliveries, did not take to the field in the second because of a hamstring injury.

His absence mattered little though as their opponents offered limited resistance, home captain Jason Holder removing Liton Das to leave them struggling on 16 for three.

Mushfiqur Rahim was one of Gabriel's four victimes.

Mushfiqur Rahim was one of Gabriel’s four victims.

Gabriel continued the demolition, removing Mushfiqur Rahim and captain Shakib Al Hasan as he posted figures of four for 36, before Holder claimed Thursday’s final wicket by dismissing Mehidy Hasan Miraz.

Earlier, Brathwaite had begun slowly, adding only 33 runs in the opening two hours of play which saw him reach his landmark with one of 11 fours.

Nightwatchman Devendra Bishoo was the first casualty of the day when he has bowled by Kamrul Islam, before Brathwaite was caught by Miraz off Shakib in the first over of the second session having hit 121.

Roston Chase, trapped lbw for two by off-spinner Miraz, and Shane Dowrich, caught by Das at short-leg off Shakib, then fell in relatively quick succession as Bangladesh’s bowlers enjoyed some success.

Hope, however, added to their misery with a fine 67 which lifted the hosts to a commanding 406.

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