Tuesday Nov 17, 2020
The Pakistan Super League (PSL) has been a very competitive competition, with players going head-to-head and spawning rivalries that often trigger debates between fans.
However, the players are great friends off the field and have often played with and against each other an international events. At various instances over the years, this friendship and mark of respect for each other came to the fore whenever a player dismissed the other but cut short his celebration.
Former Pakistan cricket captain Shahid Afridi clean bowled Misbah ul Haq, who used to captain the Islamabad United. As Misbah tried to dislodge an Afridi delivery out of the park, the ball skidded onto his stumps and the former Test captain was clean bowled.
Afridi, who celebrates every victory with his signature celebration move, refused to pull his arms up in jubilation and cut his celebration midway.
Back in 2018, Shahid Afridi then used to play for the Karachi Kings and was looking in good form, smashing boundaries left, right and center. Shaheen Afridi, the Qalandars lanky, left-arm pacer, bowled to him at blistering pace and took off his middle stump.
As his teammates erupted in joy, Shaheen ran forward to celebrate in his traditional way — which includes a jump in the air and pumping his fist in jubilation — however, he shook his head and cancelled the jump.
The commentators and millions watching at home were quickly able to read that it was a sign of respect for the swashbuckling all-rounder who had captained Pakistan in the T20 and ODI formats of the game.
Last but not the least, the recent Haris Rauf-Shahid Afridi encounter made headlines. Instead of celebrating in his usual, aggressive way, when Haris clean bowled Afridi, he joined both hands and smiled at the former Pakistan captain.
"What's he apologising for? He just smashed his middle stump," says the excited commentator.
Speaking about the incident, Haris Rauf had said he was showing respect to Afridi since he was "Pakistan's superstar" and had helped the country win several important games.
It's nice to see cricketers to show respect to each other on and off the field as well. We hope to witness the same level of quality cricket and integrity in every PSL tournament that takes place.