Shoaib Malik, the veteran all-rounder from Pakistan who is into his 22nd year in international cricket, smashed the joint-fastest fifty of the 2021 T20 World Cup against Scotland on Sunday at Sharjah. He equaled the record set by Indian opener KL Rahul against the same opponent on 5th November at Dubai International Stadium.
Shoaib Malik unleashing carnage at Sharjah
Malik arrived onto the crease in the 16th over. Scotland had restricted Pakistan to 112 for 3 and the men in green required a powerful finish. And the veteran Malik delivered exactly that. He smashed six sixes and a boundary to score an unbeaten 54 off 18. With the help of his whirlwind innings, Pakistan’s score was powered to 189 for 4 in 20 overs.
Tennis Ace star Sania Mirza, who is also the wife of Shoaib Malik was present at the Sharjah cricket stadium to cheer and support her hubby. She was seen applauding Malik’s destructive innings from the stands.
Sania Mirza's team was knocked out of the World Cup but she still enjoying her hubby batting 🤩🤩🤩 pic.twitter.com/njmX9bKco4
— S O H A I L👓 ( سہیل) (@Msohailsays) November 7, 2021
Malik’s ravishing innings helped Pakistan set a huge 190-run target for Scotland. In reply, Richie Berrington scored a 37-ball 54 but his innings weren’t enough to take the Scottish side. The Men in Green restricted their opponents to 117 for 6 and won their final Super 12 game by 72 runs.
Malik’s 18-ball fifty is the third-fastest ever in the history of the T20 World Cup. He shares the record with Glenn Maxwell and KL Rahul who notched up half-centuries by consuming a similar number of deliveries. The second fastest fifty was scored by Netherlands’ Stephan Myburgh. His quickfire innings came against Ireland in the 2014 edition.
Former India all-rounder Yuvraj Singh’s 12-ball half-century against England in 2007 remains the fastest in the history of the T20 World Cup, and in international cricket as well.
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Malik also bagged the player of the match award for his stellar performance. Speaking about his form in the post-match presentation, he said he feels fit and wants to see himself playing consistently.
“Yes, I’m in good form but I want to see myself more consistent to help the team. Overall, I feel fit. It is going to be a big game and we have to give our best shot,” said Malik in the post-match presentation ceremony.
Pakistan remains the only undefeated team in the tournament so far. They will now face Australia in the semifinals on Thursday.
• Sania Mirza cheers for her husband Shoaib Malik
• Shoaib Malik scores the joint-fastest fifty of this season