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Top 5 Performances T20 World Cup – Week 1

Pakistan's Shaheen Afridi in action during the ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2021
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Week one of the T20 World Cup is done and dusted, and there has been plenty of exciting action as Pakistan and England have dominated the early stages of the competition. The likes of Shaheen Afridi, Adil Rashid and David Warner have all started the tournament with a bang, and here are our top five performances from Week 1 of the T20 World Cup.

5. Aiden Markram – 51* (26) vs WI


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At number five is South African all-rounder Aiden Markram, who scored the fastest half-century of the tournament off only 25 deliveries against the West Indies to give the Proteas their first win of the campaign. In the absence of Quinton de Kock, Markram took the responsibility for South Africa with the bat and smashed two 4s and four towering 6s in their run-chase of 143 in Dubai.

4. Charith Asalanka – 80* (49) vs BAN


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Chasing a total hasn’t been easy at Sharjah in 2021, but Charith Asalanka powered Sri Lanka to an unlikely victory against Bangladesh with an enterprising knock of 80 from 49 deliveries. Asalanka smashed 5 fours and 5 sixes to register the highest score of the competition so far and in doing so, he also helped Sri Lanka complete their highest run-chase in T20 World Cup history.

3. Asif Ali – 25* (7) vs AFG


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Pakistan were staring at an upset in their run-chase against Afghanistan in Dubai with 24 runs needed off 12 balls, but Asif Ali changed the game completely with four swings of his blade. Finishing a match has long been considered as the toughest job in the game, but Asif Ali made it look incredibly easy as he smashed four sixes off Karim Janat’s penultimate over to give Pakistan their third win off the tournament.

2. England – Beat WI by 6 wickets


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England versus West Indies was billed as a clash between two heavyweights, but instead, it turned out to be a no-contest, with England landing an instant knockout punch with the ball. Eoin Morgan’s side skittled the fearsome West Indies batting line up for 55-all out with Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali taking six wickets between them for only 19 runs as England chased down the target with 70 balls to spare.

1. Shaheen Afridi – 3/31 vs India


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And at number one, it has to be Shaheen Shah Afridi, who announced himself on the global stage with a stellar performance against arch-rivals and tournament favourites India. Shaheen bowled with searing pace and accuracy with the new ball as he castled Indian openers Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul with two gorgeous inswinging deliveries before returning at the back end to remove King Kohli on 57.


[Featured Image Credit: ANI]