Shehzad dedicates century to 'harsh' critics

Young Ahmed Shehzad, who on Sunday became the first Pakistan batsman to score a century in all three formats, took a dig at his critics by dedicating his knock to all those who have criticised him after a couple of failures.

“It’s for all my critics who have spoken a lot of harsh things about me. There are a lot of people back home who had a lot to say after a couple of failures. I dedicate this century to all those people,” Shehzad said in a content tone.

Immediately as an after-thought, he said that it was also for his “fans, who loved him”.
Shehzad had scores of 22 and 5 in the two matches against India and Australia before his 59-ball ton on Sunday. He also surpassed his earlier highest score of 98 not out scored against Zimbabwe at Harare.

“I had always dreamt of becoming the first Pakistani player to score a century in all three formats. Prior to this match, I was listening to so many things but then the coach and the captain gave me a lot of confidence. I had a plan as I decided to pick up certain bowlers and go after them,” the 22-year-old said.

Shehzad however termed his 98 at Harare as being special as it helped him cement his place in the national side.

“(The) Harare innings was special as my place in the ODI team was still not certain. Today, when I was batting on 70-odd, Shoaib Malik came up to me and said that ‘you will easily score a century today’.”

He spoke about how he “disturbed the bowlers” with his improvisation.
“I tried the paddle sweep behind square and it didn’t come off. Sensing that, opposition got their cover fielder inside the circle and pushed the short fine-leg deeper. Then I hit two cover boundaries. That is called innovation,” he said.

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