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    Rashid Khan: From the village of Batti Kotte to become a National Hero of Afghan Cricket
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    Homechevron_rightSportschevron_rightCricketchevron_rightRashid Khan: From the...

    Rashid Khan: From the village of Batti Kotte to become a National Hero of Afghan Cricket

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    As a child, Rashid was more fond of pellets than cricket balls. Instead of going to school, Rashid would shoot small birds using the sling along with his brother. Batti Kotte, their village was dry and allowed nothing green. The sound of gunfire was more familiar than the sound of birds. Although far from Jalalabad, the capital of Afghan cricket, nearness to Pakistan's border has always kept Batti Kotte's blood close to cricket.

    Many Afghans became refugees in Peshawar as a remnant of the Soviet occupation in the 1980s. Rashid's five older brothers and four sisters were among them. The brothers soon brought Rashid to Peshawar where he started playing cricket with his brothers. Batting was given as per seniority and as Rashid did not get to bat, he turned his attention to bowling.

    Shahid Afridi has been Rashid's idol since he was interested in cricket. Considering that it was Pakistan that aided Afghan cricket in toddling, this doesn't seem strange.

    He remembers balling up to 25 overs daily. Their indoor cricket involved a painting of stumps done using a tabashir (a chalk-like object) on the wall. This restricted the batsman from attacking shots.


    Hardly could someone out a solidly defending batsman. It was impossible with normal balls. The concrete surface was not favourable to leg breaks. That's how Rashid developed an attacking style that combined wrist spin and finger spin.

    He applies in any form of cricket his wrong'un method of wrist spin in the back of the hand release position. Rashid's weapon overcomes slowness, the main drawback of wrist spin, with a flick of his fingers. It was that pre-release finger flick that differentiated and focalised Rashid's deliveries.


    That was his entry to the Afghan 20-20 team. Rashid Khan's journey from there is history.

    Mangal could cut the first ball according to the turn. The next ball was on the same line and length. But it was a sharp wrong'un that broke Mangal's miscalculation to cut again.

    There is an interesting story about Rashid joining the Afghan team. Rashid was bowling in an exhibition match attended by the first Afghan international captain, Nawroz Mangal.


    Mangal could cut the first ball according to the turn. The next ball was on the same line and length. But it was a sharp wrong'un that broke Mangal's miscalculation to cut again.

    That was his entry to the Afghan 20-20 team. Rashid Khan's journey from there is history.


    At 22, he has taken 245 international wickets in all formats. He took 16 wickets at a staggering 7.9 in the five-match ODI series against Zimbabwe.

    Rashid proved to be a marvel of cricket when he took 7 wickets for 18 runs in an ODI against the Windies and took 5 wickets for just 3 runs in a T20 match against the same opponents. His googlies, arm ball, sliders and flippers are one of the most lethal in contemporary cricket.

    This Batti Kotte guy is the latest sensation in classical spin bowling which had Muttiah Muralitharan, Shane Warne and Anil Kumble as flag bearers

    (Translated by Sibahathulla Sakib)

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    TAGS:Cricket Updates Afghanistan Rashid Khan Arman 
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