While Rashid Khan and Mujeeb Ur Rahman seem to represent Afghanistan’s future with the ball, much of the hype of a new-age Afghanistan batsman has centred around Rahmat Shah.
Capable of playing in all formats, Shah made his ODI debut in 2013 against Scotland in Sharjah after beginning his career in Pakistan’s domestic circles.
His first-class debut came a week after his ODI debut against the same opposition, but they did not immediately bring about a regular spot in the side.
A lack of opportunities resulted in Shah becoming a fringe player in the set-up, and it was only upon his comeback to the team in 2016 that he cemented his place with an unbeaten century against Scotland.
That set off a run of ten half centuries and two centuries coming for the 25-year-old between September 2016 and 2018, including a career-best 108 to seal a series win against Ireland at their adopted home in Greater Noida, India.
Consistency was something Afghanistan struggled to find for the opening matches of the ICC World Cup Qualifiers in March 2018, but Shah played an instrumental role in helping Afghanistan reach this year’s World Cup with three 50s in seven matches.
Shah’s 72 runs off 90 deliveries in a 93-run win over Sri Lanka in the same competition proved that Afghanistan can definitely mix it with the regulars.
The next test will be proving his more noticeable statement that his side can beat India and Pakistan, and he will know a large part of the side’s ability to post a sizeable total lies with him.
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