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Was high-pressure India vs Pakistan match reason behind Naseem Shah missing ODI World Cup?

Was high-pressure India vs Pakistan match reason behind Naseem Shah missing ODI World Cup?

Naseem had a history of discomforts and some sort of connection to injuries dating back to his early days

Pakistani pace sensation Naseem Shah is back terrorizing batsmen after a shoulder injury sidelined him from the coveted 2023 ODI World Cup. However, the culprit behind that injury can be pinpointed to a single, high-octane encounter: the headline-making match against arch-rivals India!

When did Naseem Shah get injured?

While bowling during the Super four Asia Cup clash in Colombo, Naseem suffered a debilitating shoulder injury. Describing the incident later, he spoke of a “tendon rip” and a feeling of something tearing within his shoulder. The extent of the damage necessitated surgery in the United Kingdom, followed by a lengthy rehabilitation period. This forced him to miss the much-anticipated 2023 ODI World Cup held in India.

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Pakistan massively missed Naseem

Naseem’s absence was a significant blow to Pakistan’s bowling attack. His ability to consistently generate pace without compromising on swing was considered a key element in their strategy. Team director Mickey Arthur later acknowledged the team’s struggle, stating “Our bowling equilibrium was out of kilter” without Naseem. This imbalance played a part in Pakistan’s fifth-place finish at the World Cup, as they failed to progress to the knockout stages.

“You’re going to tell me I’m out for six months”

Naseem had a history of discomforts and some sort of connection to injuries dating back to his childhood. Even when he fell down during the clash against India in September, 2023, he knew what the doctor was going to say to him – A six-month- layoff. “I had to undergo surgery, and that is a big deal if you’ve never had surgery before,” Naseem said as quoted by the Cricket Monthly.

“There was a ball I bowled against India [in the Asia Cup Super Four] after which I fell down. And just before that I felt a tendon in my shoulder rip and sensed a gap in there. When we did a CT scan and the doctor approached me, I said, “I know what you’re about to tell me. You’re going to tell me I’m out for six months.” Because I understood what was happening in my body and there was no way out other than surgery.”

Naseem Shah made his comeback with a bang

Thankfully, for Pakistan and cricket fans worldwide, Naseem’s story doesn’t end there. He has undergone a successful recovery and is back on the field. His participation in the recent T20I series against New Zealand and Ireland showcased his superb fitness.

However, prior to that, he gave a remarkable case of himself during the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2024. Playing for the Islamabad United, he played a crucial role in their championship win by claiming 15 wickets at a strike rate of below 18. More importantly, he is expected to be a key player for Pakistan in the upcoming T20 World Cup. Pakistan will clash once again against India, this time in New York on June 9.

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