India-Pakistan duel is one of the biggest rivalries in cricket history. Though the two nations have stopped touring each other due to political clashes, they regularly meet at International Cricket Council’s (ICC) grand events.

Still, one cannot forget the times when the two countries used to have one on one series. Indian bowlers Irfan Pathan, Ashish Nehra and Zaheer Khan, were at the top of their bent against the ‘Men in Green,’ during those games. Pathan is widely remembered for his hat-trick in the opening over of the 2006 Karachi Test.

However, former Pakistan skipper Shoaib Malik had a relatively easier time playing Pathan as he averaged 89.50 against the latter.

Talking about the same in an interview, Malik pointed out that Pathan was a proponent of inswing in his initial days, which the right-handed batter played well.

“My average against Irfan Pathan is good because I play the inswing well. At that time, Irfan did not bowl out-swingers. He added it to his arsenal later, but early in his career, he majorly bowled in-swinging deliveries. So, I knew he would bowl an in-swinger, and I prepared myself accordingly,” Shoaib stated in an interview with Cricwick.

Reflecting on the success of Zaheer and Nehra, the Sialkot-born pointed out that the duo targeted the edges of the bat, which made it difficult for his compatriots to stand against the two.

“Zaheer Khan and Ashish Nehra targeted the edges of the bat. Hence, they took many wickets against Pakistan. If a bowler targets the edge, he will be more successful. I feel my ability to play the in-swinging deliveries helped me do well against Irfan,” Shoaib remarked.

Meanwhile, Shoaib regularly makes headlines by giving an insight of his personal life on social media.


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