Babar Azam, Shaheen Afridi achieve career milestones after Ireland win

Babar becomes most successful captain in T20Is, while Shaheen completes 300 international wickets

By
Faizan Lakhani
PCB Chairman Mohsin Naqvi hands over customised team jerseys to Babar Azam and Shaheen Afridi for most wins as skipper and 300 international wickets, respectively on May 13, 2024. — X/@TheRealPCB

Pakistan skipper Babar Azam and star pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi achieved notable career milestones after the Green Shirts defeated Ireland in the second T20I on Sunday.

The match being played at Dublin's Clontarf Cricket Club, saw the Men in Green securing a seven-wicket win against the hosts by successfully chasing down the 194-run target in the 17th over courtesy of Mohammad Rizwan, Fakhar Zaman and Azam Khan's fiery knocks.

With the national side levelling the three-match series 1-1, the match held key significance for Babar and Shaheen with regards to their respective careers.

Most successful captain

For the star batter, Sunday's win made him the most successful T20I captain in history as the 29-year-old won his 45th match as skipper in the shortest format of the game — the most by any captain.

Babar achieved the feat in 78 matches he's played as a skipper. He is followed by Uganda's Brian Masaba in second position with 44 wins in 56 matches.

Meanwhile, Afghanistan's Asghar Afghan and England's Eoin Morgan are the third and fourth most successful T20I captains with 42 wins each. Afghan, however, led his side in 52 matches, while Morgan was England's captain for 72 games.

300 int'l wickets

Separately, the win also saw Shaheen bagging 300 international wickets after dismissing three players during Friday's match.

The left-arm pacer achieved the feat in 145 matches. He has 113 and 104 wickets to his name in Test and ODI's, respectively. Whereas in the T20Is, he has dismissed 84 players.

Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman Mohsin Naqvi, who met the team on Sunday after their loss in the first T20I, congratulated and presented Babar and Shaheen with team jerseys for their achievements.

Highest number of sixes

Additionally, the national side also reached another milestone of its own after the batters hit an impressive 15 sixes during a T20I — surpassing the previous tally of 12.

Of these, Fakhar hit the most i.e., six maximums, followed by Rizwan and Azam's four each, whereas one six was attributed to opener Saim Ayub.

Also, this was only the second time that the Green Shirts hit five sixes during the power play.

The series decider will be held at the same venue on May 14.