‘I Think Myself As World’s Best All Rounder’: Shadab Khan

Saqlain Mushtaq’s appointment as the head coach of the Pakistan cricket team has made a significant impact on the country’s spinners, according to vice-captain Shadab Khan. Khan, a prominent all-rounder, acknowledges Mushtaq’s instrumental role in shaping his successful international career. With the first Test match against Sri Lanka looming, Khan reflects on his journey and the invaluable guidance received from the legendary off-spinner.

Ever since his debut in 2017, Shadab Khan has been a consistent performer for the Men in Green, steadily evolving into a proficient all-rounder across all cricket formats. Notably, he holds the distinction of being the first Pakistani cricketer to achieve 100 wickets in T20 Internationals. However, it was during the 2021 Caribbean Premier League (CPL) season that Khan faced a challenging period in his career.

Struggling with his form, Shadab Khan took a bold decision to forego his participation in the CPL and instead sought the expertise of Saqlain Mushtaq at the National High-Performance Centre. This move proved to be transformative, as Khan not only acquired valuable technical skills but also experienced a remarkable boost in confidence. In an interview with Cricbuzz, Khan revealed the profound impact of working with Mushtaq, stating, “Working with him had such a psychological effect on me that I began to think of myself as the world’s best bowler.”

Saqlain Mushtaq, widely regarded as one of the finest spin bowlers in cricket history, brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to his role as head coach. His expertise in spin bowling has been instrumental in shaping the skills and mindset of Pakistan’s spinners. Shadab Khan, along with fellow spinner Mohammad Nawaz, has notably benefited from Mushtaq’s guidance and mentorship.

As Pakistan gears up for a two-Test series against Sri Lanka, commencing with the first match at the Galle International Stadium on July 16, the impact of Saqlain Mushtaq’s coaching is expected to be evident on the field. Khan’s growth as an all-rounder, coupled with the improved performances of other spinners, reflects the positive influence of Mushtaq’s coaching philosophy.

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Adding an intriguing twist to their connection, Shadab Khan recently tied the knot with Saqlain Mushtaq’s daughter, further strengthening the bond between coach and player. This familial tie not only adds a personal dimension to their relationship but also deepens their collaboration on the cricket field.

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