When it comes to cricket in Pakistan, it is another level. We are addicted to this game. We have a legacy of world-renowned cricketers who are record breakers. The list is so long that it would be difficult to accommodate all of them in one article. Probably we might need a series of articles to cover their contribution. But but! Behold! Yesterday, Shahid Afridi aka Lala and Boom Boom announced that he will be pulling out of the PSL 7 due to chronic back pain. With him, an era comes to end. He holds several records both with bat and ball and under his captaincy. He has provided us with many memorable moments throughout his 26-year long career.
Let’s give you a glimpse of Shahid Afridi’s career of becoming Lala and Boom Boom.
He entered the cricket arena in 1996 and served Pakistan for 26 long years. This includes all formats of crickets and PSL seasons to date. He looked up to the legendary Abdul Qadir as his role model. He has always considered himself as a bowler, but his smashing hits has made the fans expect more from his bat too.
Says farewell to cricket
He was COVID positive and took a break for recovery before PSL 7. The health issues persisted and yesterday he tweeted that he can no longer be part of the playing squad. He had previously announced that this will be his last appearance in the PSL.
Good bye to PSL | My body is in serious painhttps://t.co/yyHWSibxlH
— Shahid Afridi (@SAfridiOfficial) February 13, 2022
His career is stretched for over 26 years. He is a leg-spinning allrounder.
With Ball: He took 1,123 wickets in 943 matches (all formats).
With Bat: He made 20,975 runs which included 99 fifties and 21 centuries and more than 850 sixes.
Teams/Franchises he played for (except Pakistan and PSL)
- KFC Twenty20 Big Bash (2009–10): Southern Redbacks
- Sri Lankan Premier League (2016): Ruhuna Royals
- County Cricket Club (2015): Northamptonshire Steelbacks
- Bangladesh Premier League (4th Edition): Rangpur Riders
- Caribbean Premier League (3rd season): St Kitts and Nevis Patriots
- Caribbean Premier League (6th season): Jamaica Tallawahs
- Afghanistan Premier League (2018): Paktia Panthers
- Global T20 Canada (2019): Brampton Wolves
- Bangladesh Premier League (6th edition): Comilla Victorians
- Lanka Premier League (2020): Galle Gladiators
- Everest Premier League (2021): Kathmandu Kings XI
- T10 League Dubai: Pakhtoon & Qalandars
- He has the honour of making two of the fastest ODI hundreds, including the fastest (37 balls in 1996) one ever in his first innings ever at the age of 16
- Afridi kept this record for 18 years which was broken by Corey Anderson in 2014 with 36 balls and then in 2015 by AB Devilliers with 31 balls
- He is the 8th Youngest cricketer to make a century
- Youngest cricketer to take 5 wickets in an innings at the age of 18 yrs
- He is the 9th captain to captain 44 T20i matches
- Most sixes in a career – 351 sixes in ODI’s
- He has conceded 2362 runs the most by any bowler in a T20I career
- He has received more than 80 Man of the Match awards
- The Pakistani government had awarded him with the Pride of Performance (2010) and Sitara e Imtiaz (2018)
- He has received 32 players of the match award which is the most by any player in ODI’s
- He established Shahid Afridi Foundation in 2014
- UNICEF approached and took him on board for Polio Campaign in the Waziristan region
- In 2015, he was named ‘World’s Most Charitable Athlete’ by ‘Do Something’
As an entrepreneur
He recently opened his restaurant Lala Darbar which will serve Pakistani food in Dubai.
Title of Lala and Boom Boom
His teammates called him Lala and the world knew him as Boom Boom – a title that was given to him by none other than Ravi Shashtri. He has attracted crowds with his cricket.
Celebrities tweeted to bid him farewell.
Not only @TeamQuetta
But everyone will miss you especially the passionate crowds @SAfridiOfficial !! You were extremely impressive as always. Wish you a speedy recovery – you are a true fighter indeed. Lots of prayers 🙏
— Faisal Javed Khan (@FaisalJavedKhan) February 13, 2022
Rest kero Lala. Is umar main yeh ishq nahi asaan. https://t.co/08Wr93ChBg
— Shoaib Akhtar (@shoaib100mph) February 13, 2022
The reaction of fans
The fans took it to Twitter when the retirement was announced, that too midway PSL.
Last Walk from #PSL
— TEAM AFRIDI (@TEAM_AFRIDI) February 13, 2022
— MALIK TAIMOOR JAMIL ❄️ (@mtaimoorj) February 13, 2022
People's Champion will not be seen again in professional cricket, that's heart breaking, but happiness is that he made us happy again and again throughout these 26 years, Served his country with proud and we will never forget that. #ThankYouShahidAfridi 👑🙌 pic.twitter.com/PbFwa79n84
— Usman Satti (@usmansatti476) February 14, 2022
1123 wickets in 943 matches, at an average of 28, plus 20975 runs with 99 fifties and 21 centuries including more than 850 sixes, that's huge Lala!!
— Mian Umaz (@MianUmaz) February 14, 2022
he is the man who gave our nation so many reasons to smile,✨
Thank you @SAfridiOfficial for giving infinite moments of happiness,& lovely memories,THANK YOU SO MUCH!!
you'll be missed forever 🥺💟
اک دن تو نا ملے گا،
تیرا نام پھر بھی رہے گا!#ThankYouShahidAfridi pic.twitter.com/6NdKBW2bZP
— Uroojفاطمہ✨ (@uroojf_f) February 13, 2022
Thank You Boom Boom for entertaining us all these years on the grounds. The performances would be remembered for the years to come and as long as cricket is alive.