Shaheen Shah Afridi vs Rohit Sharma was one battle that everyone was looking forward to ahead of the India vs Pakistan Super Fours encounter at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. While the Pakistan pacer has been rated as amongst the best bowlers with the new ball especially in this format, the India captain has also proven himself as an opener over the years and his record in this format of the game speaks for himself. Having said that, Rohit’s struggles against the left-arm pacer have been well known.
Shaheen had even got the better of him in the team’s group-stage face off in Kandy earlier this month. However, in Colombo it was Rohit who had the upper hand. The 36-year-old also broke a record as he became the first batter in the world to hit a six off the bowling off Afridi in the first over of the innings in ODIs. While he respected when Shaheen hit the right lengths and was cautious in his approach as soon as he saw an opportunity with the pacer drifting on to his legs a bit, he played a flick off his pads that went all the way for a maximum.
The video of that shot has gone viral on social media:
A majestic flick & @ImRo45 deposits one over the ropes!
Authoritative way to get off the mark!
— Star Sports (@StarSportsIndia) September 10, 2023
This was not only was this the first six by a batter against Afridi in the first over of an innings in ODIs but across international cricket too no other batter has yet managed to achieve the feat. Talking about the match, Pakistan invited India to bat first and the Indian openers put on quite a show, adding 121 runs for the first wicket. Both Rohit and Shubman Gill, however, departed in quick succession with Rohit falling to Shadab Khan for 56 off 49 in the 17th over and Gill falling to Afridi in the 18th over for 58 off 52.