Former Pakistan cricketer Shahid Afridi made his comeback to competitive cricket in the 2020 Pakistan Super League (PSL) playoffs. Back in March, he had last played when the league stage of the T20 tournament took place. Thereafter, the swashbuckling all-rounder served his country in the COVID-19 pandemic, distributing ration and other items with the help of his foundation.
He was also tested positive for coronavirus, but he managed to recover, much to his and the fans’ relief. On Saturday, November 14, he played for the Multan Sultans in their Qualifier against Imad Wasim’s Karachi Kings at the National Stadium in Karachi. Coming to bat at number seven, he started his knock with a massive six but perished to pacer Arshad Iqbal after a run-a-ball 12.
With the ball in hand, he picked up the crucial wicket of Iftikhar Ahmed in the 13th over of the Kings’ run-chase. In three overs, the 40-year-old conceded 30 runs at an economy rate of 10. The Sultans went on to lose the match, the result of which was decided in the Super Over. Both teams were locked on 141 runs after which Mohammad Amir and Sherfane Rutherford won the game for the Kings.
Shahid Afridi’s helmet makes the headlines
In the meantime, apart from his cricketing prowess, Afridi also came into the limelight due to his unique helmet. The protective gear didn’t have a grill as the Khyber Agency-born wanted to see the ball with clarity. The design of the helmet was such that the ball could easily have snuck through. Though Afridi didn’t face any troubles, the gear came under the scanner in the eyes of the netizens.
Over the years, the ICC has been trying its heart out for the safety of players. Back in 2014, Australia’s Phillip Hughes passed away after copping a blow on the head during a first-class match and it rang the alarm bells in the cricket fraternity.
Recently, the legendary Sachin Tendulkar also asked the ICC to make the helmet a mandatory gear for the batsmen after Vijay Shankar got hit during one of the IPL matches.
Here’s how the netizens reacted:
Someone tell Shahid Afridi this helmet is dangerous 🥺 #MsVskk #KKvMS pic.twitter.com/kL8FcOzAhT
— Shazziya Mehmood (@shaziyaaM) November 14, 2020
shahid afridi’s helmet grill is giving me anxiety
— Left Arm Phast (@zeetweets_) November 14, 2020
Different helmet but same performance. A six and out, Shahid Afridi for you!#pakistan #cricket #shahidafridi #multansultans #karachikings #babarazam #psl #ipl #cricketfever #tayyarhain #harhaalmaincricket #cricketpakistan #nationalstadium #karachi #cricketcomeshome #ibleedgreen pic.twitter.com/KYQviSb2GR
— Offstump (@Offstump6) November 14, 2020
Shahid Afridi ordered helmet from Daraz?#KKvMS pic.twitter.com/JEy7gfyxg3
— Syed Arham (@__SMAS__) November 14, 2020
Shahid Afridi solving the problem/ destroying the point of your modern fixed-grille helmets. pic.twitter.com/kXpaeVgdCG
— Dave Tickner (@tickerscricket) November 14, 2020
I am as useless in my house as afridi’s helmet: pic.twitter.com/Q30Q9tUIcJ
— JHOLACHHAAP DOCTOR (@unfunny_chandan) November 14, 2020
If you ever feel useless,just think of the Afridi helmet 😂 pic.twitter.com/IRysHqPimW
— Dhaniya_Podina (@dhaniya_podina) November 14, 2020
80’s batsman after seeing this helmet pic.twitter.com/aQiDPL8fyb
— Yash. (@Datascientist3_) November 14, 2020
New design helmet after Afridi realized he needs to see the ball too while batting. pic.twitter.com/ArfOROJtzN
— Silly Point (@FarziCricketer) November 14, 2020