Pakistani fast bowler Naseem Shah made a sensational T20I debut against India in the Asia Cup this year. The right-arm pacer bowled a fiery spell and picked up two wickets for 27 runs. The Pakistani was sensational in his first over, dismissing KL Rahul for a golden duck. That very over, he got the edge of Virat Kohli but the fielder at slip failed to grab the dolly. Later, he blew away Suryakumar Yadav’s stumps to bring Pakistan back into the match. Naseem’s efforts, however, were not enough to give Pakistan a win as the team suffered a close 5-wicket loss.
Commentators said Naseem, 19, was one of the most promising upcoming cricketers in world cricket, but a recent controversy about his age might get him in trouble. An old tweet by veteran Pakistan journalist Saj Sadiq about Naseem’s age has stirred cricket fans on social media platforms.
In 2018, Sadiq had tweeted that Naseem was a 17-year-old boy. Since then, 4 years have passed, but Naseem is still 19 in 2022!
The netizens were quick to point this out, alleging an age fraud by the Pakistani pacer. “Highly rated 17-year-old pace bowler Nasim Shah who was signed by Quetta Gladiators for the Pakistan Super League has suffered a back injury. He is back in training and hopes to be fit for PSL4,” Saj Sadiq had tweeted.
Age fraud is a serious crime and ICC has a zero-tolerance policy against it. Notwithstanding the policy, Pakistani players get into such controversies time and again. Several players of that country, including Shahid Afridi, have been accused of misrepresenting their age.