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Shadab Khan: Pakistan’s match-winner who brings ‘fire and life’

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MELBOURNE: No matter what happens when Pakistan face England in Sunday’s final at the MCG, Shadab Khan has had a Twenty20 World Cup to remember.

Starring with both bat and ball, the 24-year-old all-rounder helped energise Pakistan’s flagging campaign when all seemed lost.

After last-ball defeats to India and Zimbabwe, Shadab pulled them back from the brink with three wickets against the Netherlands for their first win.

He then turned up with a fiery 22-ball 52 and bowling figures of 2-16 during his man-of-the-match performance against South Africa.

The Proteas’ subsequent shock defeat to the Netherlands helped Pakistan gatecrash the semi-finals.

Shadab has been shortlisted for player of the tournament and could well win it if Pakistan do business against England in the decider at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

When team-mates and coaches talk about Shadab they all refer to one thing.

“He brings invaluable energy to the team,” captain Babar Azam said.

Shadab’s commitment and relentless energy, whether it be in training or matches, galvanised Pakistan’s drooping World Cup.

Fire and instinct

Like many Pakistani cricketers, Shadab’s beginnings were humble.

He grew up playing cricket on the rough pitches of Mianwali district, a farming community near the banks of the Indus River in Punjab province.

It also happens to be home to former prime minister and cricket legend Imran Khan and former captain Misbah-ul-Haq.

People who know him well said Shadab has always been relentless in his dedication.

“Shadab’s commitment to cricket is unparalleled,” said his club coach Sajjad Ahmed.

“He used to sleep around 9:00pm and reach the ground before sunrise.

“That’s been his routine for years so that he can practise as much as possible.”

It was Ahmed who suggested Shadab should become an all-rounder and not just focus on batting.

Graduating from club cricket to district level and to Pakistan “A”, Shadab featured in a 2016 junior World Cup in Bangladesh and finished joint top wicket-taker for his team with 11.

The year after, Pakistan Super League franchise Islamabad United picked him as an emerging player.

“We were picking players in the draft for PSL 2017 and every other team was passing him on so I asked Misbah about him,” recalls Hassan Cheema, strategy manager of United.

“Misbah said that Shadab has that fire and instinct that he had not seen in a player for years.

“Six years later you can see his competitive fire and life he brings in the team is invaluable,” Cheema told AFP.

From boy to man 

But to talk only about his energy and commitment risks downplaying Shadab’s talent.

As a leg-spinner variations are Shadab’s assets and he has had success extracting bounce from the hard Australian pitches at the World Cup.

When he bats and fields his style is aggressive — his triple ability gives Pakistan flexibility in team selections.

It was then-Pakistan head coach Mickey Arthur who brought him into the side in 2017.

“When we got Shadab into the team he was incredibly exciting as a cricketer,” Arthur told AFP from Britain.

“He was athletic and was a three-in-one cricketer.”

Since then Shadab has added maturity and confidence to his armoury.

“He is a match-winner for Pakistan. The difference I have seen is that he has come from a boy to a man,” said Arthur.

Leaps and bounds

Shadab had a dream international debut when he was named man of the match in Pakistan’s T20 win over the West Indies in Bridgetown in 2017.

That same year one of Shadab’s finest moments came at the Champions Trophy in a showdown against arch-rivals India, where he trapped Yuvraj Singh in front of the wicket.

English umpire Richard Kettleborough was unmoved but Shadab convinced skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed to review — and was proved correct, making Shadab a hero of Pakistan’s win.

“It was very close to the bat but Shadab was confident that it had hit the pad first,” Sarfaraz told AFP.

“It is his confidence in the ground that helps and motivates the team and that is why he is improving by leaps and bounds.”

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Kubra Khan expressed her annoyance within the initial 15 minutes of watching the new television series ‘Noor Jahan’.

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In a recent interview with a digital magazine, Kubra Khan delved into her character development in the television series ‘Noor Jahan’ and openly admitted to feeling vexed and exasperated while watching the initial episode of the show. She expressed sympathy towards women, such as Safeena [Alina Abbas], who are disregarded by their spouses.

“Initially, it was vexing to observe.” Upon viewing the initial episode, specifically the first 15 minutes, she confessed to feeling irritated.

Khan expressed his annoyance, stating that despite his involvement in the production and participation in the shoot, he found himself angry due to his prior observations of similar occurrences in real life.

“Furthermore, Musaddiq Malek, the director, has skillfully woven the elements of the film together. His work is truly remarkable and clever,” she commented, specifically referring to the opening scene in which Hunaid, played by Noor Hassan, forgets his wife Safeena’s birthday but manages to organize a lavish celebration for his mother, portrayed by Saba Hamid, on the same evening.

“The ‘Sinf-e-Aahan’ actor stated that people perceive the story as relevant and relatable, with each individual feeling a personal connection to it,” the actor shared. “Men who are overly dependent on their mothers should refrain from getting married until they are capable of assuming the responsibilities associated with being a husband.”

Khan, known for his discerning project choices and avoidance of clichéd roles, affirmed that ‘Noor Jahan’ stands apart from conventional ‘saas bahu’ dramas.

Continuing to hint at her character’s growth, she stated, “You will have to wait and observe the drama to find out if she will testify, join the villainous side, or alter the dynamics of the family.”

In addition to Khan playing the role of Noor Bano, the film ‘Noor Jahan’ features a talented cast including Saba Hamid, Ali Rehman Khan, Noor Hassan, Zoya Nasir, Hajra Yamin, Ali Raza, Yousuf Bashir Qureshi, Mahmood Aslam, and Alina Abbas, among others.

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Sania Mirza humbly seeks forgiveness as she begins her pilgrimage to Hajj.

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Sania Mirza revealed on Sunday afternoon that she was lucky enough to start her Hajj journey this year in a fresh post on her Instagram account.

“My beloveds and friends, I am extremely fortunate to have the chance to travel the holy Hajj,” she declared.

As she got ready for this life-changing encounter, she wrote, “I humbly ask for your forgiveness for any wrongdoings and shortcomings.” This opportunity to pursue spiritual restoration and atonement fills my heart with immense gratitude. Please hear my request and lead me down the path of blessings, Allah. I am quite thankful and consider myself very fortunate.

As she started this once-in-a-lifetime voyage, she pleaded, “Please keep me in your thoughts and prayers.” “With a humble heart and a stronger imaan, I hope to return as a better human being.”

Millions of fans on social media, including her close pals and members of the entertainment and sports industries, sent their best wishes to the star, asking her to keep them in mind while she prays.

It is noteworthy to mention here that in March of last year, before to Ramadan, Sania Mirza conducted the Umrah alongside her son Izhaan and other family members.

For those who don’t know, Mirza and Malik were wed from 2010 until January of this year, when it was revealed that she had petitioned Khula for a divorce.

With Shoaib Malik’s divorce, Sania Mirza is searching for love.

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“Where is the hate?” is how Vivek Oberoi answers Pakistan’s affection.

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During a recent interview with a YouTube channel, Vivek Oberoi was filmed in a touching exchange with his Pakistani fans, who applauded the Bollywood actor as they passed his elegant Bentley while strolling around Dubai.

Oberoi responded to the affection by saying, “No matter how strongly Indian you are, you come here and you see the way the Pakistanis, Bangladeshis, Nepalis, and Sri Lankans love you.”

The “Bollywood villain,” who lives on the other side of the border, and your sense of borders begin to fade. The question, “Does hate exist?” begins to creep in. He went on.

The “Saathiya” actor went on, “I know this is highly controversial, but when you consider how much they value our food, culture, movies, and overall way of being, how can there possibly be hate for us?”

“In general, people love us, but I’m sure there are a few people who might be like that,” he said in closing.

Notably, Oberoi moved to the United Arab Emirates from India with his wife and two children in search of a better life.

Vivek Oberoi’s most recent appearance on screen was in Rohit Shetty’s police drama “Indian Police Force” on Amazon Prime Video.

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