Pakistan cricket legend Shahid Afridi is celebrating his 44th birthday today. Afridi made quite an entry at the international stage blasting a stunning 37-ball century in while playing only his second ODI as he built a reputation of a big-hitting batsman and eventually shining as a reliable legspinner. Also Read - Have Plan B For Upcoming T20 World Cup in India But Proceedings as Planned Now: ICC Interim CEO
Between 1996 and 2018, Afridi played 27 Tests, 398 ODIs and 99 T20Is for Pakistan, scoring over 11,000 runs in them and taking 541 wickets as well. His wickets may given one an impression of being a specialist bowler but it was his madcap approach with the bat that helped his build a memorable career. Also Read - Batting Legend Rahul Dravid to Speak at MIT Sports Analytics Conference
The 37-ball ton remained the fastest in ODI history for nearly two decades before being surpassed by Corey Anderson in 2014 (36 ball) and then AB de Villiers (31 balls) in 2015. Also Read - Twitter Reactions: Fans Divided After Quinton de Kock's Controversial Gesture Results in Fakhar Zaman Run Out
While, expectedly, is on-field exploits or lack of thereof consistently made the headlines, the mystery surrounding his real age was a hot topic of debate, something which remains so even today – three years after he played his final international match after multiple retirement U-turns.
Afridi’s official date of birth with the International Cricket Council is March 1, 1980. It means, his 37-ball hundred came when he was just 16. However, in his autobiography, he claimed his year of birth being 1975 and not 1980 as per ICC database.
“I was just nineteen, and not sixteen like they claim. I was born in 1975. So yes, the authorities stated my age incorrectly,” Afridi wrote in the book titled ‘Game Changer.’
However, as per the claim in the book, his age today should be 46 but as per his Tweet, he has turned ’44 today!’.
“Thank you very much for all the lovely birthday wishes – 44 today! My family and my fans are my biggest assets. Really enjoying my stint with Multan and hope to produce match winning performances for all MS fans,” Afridi posted on Monday.
Naturally, users on Twitter had a field day.
It seemed that with Afridi clarifying his age in his autobiography, the controversy has been put to bed for good. However, his latest post on microblogging site Twitter has only added to the myth.