Naseem Shah on Monday set a new Test record when he became the youngest fast bowler in the format’s history to take a five-wicket haul.
Shah, 16 years and 307 days, trapped Vishwa Fernando lbw for a nine-ball duck to complete his maiden five-wicket haul in Test cricket as Sri Lanka were bowled out for 212 in chase of 476 runs.
During the post-match media interaction, Shah recalled he had planned to dedicate his maiden five-wicket haul to his late mother. As he was replying to a query, Shah broke down saying it was a difficult time when he heard the news of his mother’s death while on tour of Australia earlier this year.
“I don’t have words to explain how difficult it was, it is better that I don’t share those feelings with anyone here,” he was quoted as saying by Geo News. “I had planned this before my debut that I will dedicate my first five-wicket haul to my mother so that she could see me on TV.”
Following that, Shah left the conference, wiping tears. His figures of 5/31 from 12.5 overs helped Pakistan beat Sri Lanka by 263 runs to clinch the two-match series 1-0 on the fifth and final day of their second Test in Karachi.
Overall, Shah is the second youngest to the landmark with the list being topped by compatriot Naseem-ul-Ghani, a left-arm spinner. Incidentally, the earlier record for the youngest pacer to take a fifer was also held by a Pakistani – Mohammad Amir who was 17 years and 257 days old when he took 5/79 against Australia in 2009.
Shah was in Australia playing a tour match when his mother passed away. He decided to stay with the squad and not attend the funeral before making an emotional debut, becoming the youngest Test debutante in Australia.