Rashid Khan further enhanced his reputation as arguably the best T20 bowler in the world with yet another scintillating performance on Sunday. The leg-spinner starred with the ball as Afghanistan crushed Bangladesh in the first T20I in Dehradun.
Batting first, Afghanistan scored 167 for 8 in the allotted 20 overs. Asked to bat first, Afghanistan were off to a slow start. However, the momentum shifted in their favour towards the end of their innings when they slammed 52 off the last three overs. Samiullah Shenwari (36 off 18) and Shafiqullah Shafiq (24 off 8) finished off the proceedings with the bat strongly to fire Afghanistan to a competitive total. The bowlers then came out all guns blazing to bowl out Bangladesh for just 122.
At 80 for 3 in ten overs, Bangladesh were comfortably placed before Rashid Khan was introduced in the attack. On his first two balls, the leggie accounted for Mushfiqur Rahim and Sabbir Rahman to all but seal the visitors’ fate. He went on to finish the game with stunning figures of 3 for 13 off his 4 overs.
His stunning exploits have garnered him praise from the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli. In a recent interview, he said Sachin’s praise for him was ‘unreal’ and also revealed that Kohli and Dhoni also praised him.
“Sachin’s tweet was unreal. I kept on thinking for hours what to reply to him. I was really happy. Virat also praised me a lot and Dhoni also during the course of the IPL. It lifts your confidence a lot when they compliment you,” he told PTI.
During the IPL, Tendulkar had called Rashid the best T20 spinner in the world after he starred for Sunrisers Hyderabad against Kolkata Knight Riders in the second Qualifier. Rashid finished the IPL as the second highest wicket-taker with 21 wickets to his name.
Always felt @rashidkhan_19 was a good spinner but now I wouldn’t hesitate in saying he is the best spinner in the world in this format. Mind you, he’s got some batting skills as well. Great guy.
— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) May 25, 2018
He further expressed his delight with his form in the last couple of months.
“Last two months, in fact last two years have been very good for me. Since I have joined the national team, I got the success that I wanted. I am very happy with that. I am enjoying the game and that is why I am doing well,” said Rashid.