Pakistan paceman Shaheen Shah Afridi took a rare double hat-trick on his way to a six-wicket haul in Hampshire’s final match of their T20 Blast campaign, report Cricket.com.au.
The left-armer took a wicket with each of his last four balls in Hampshire’s clash with Middlesex, all of them bowled, as he finished with figures of 6-19 from his four overs.It’s just the sixth time in T20 history that a bowler has taken four wickets in four balls, which is known as a double hat-trick, and Afridi’s figures are the best ever by a Hampshire bowler and the equal-third best by a Pakistani.
Chasing 142 to win, Middlesex were in with a chance of victory when Afridi started his fourth and final over, with the visitors needing 23 to win from 18 balls with four wickets in hand and No.5 John Simpson on 47 not out.But having conceded a single from each of his first two balls of the over, Afridi shattered Simpson’s stumps with an in-swinger from over the wicket before he set his sights on the Middlesex tail.
Switching to around the wicket, he cleaned up Steve Finn first ball with a near unplayable yorker before he secured the hat-trick as No.10 Thilan Walallawita had a swipe across the line and was also bowled. Afridi then produced another full delivery that knocked over Tim Murtagh’s middle stump to finish the match and ensure his final act in his stint with Hampshire was a memorable one.
The left-armer’s performance was made even more remarkable by the fact he’d taken just one wicket at an average of 191 in his previous six matches. It was an enjoyable way for Hampshire to end their tournament, snapping a six-game losing streak and registering just their second win of the season.
Hampshire finished bottom of the South Group after 10 games, ensuring they missed the finals.The quarter-finals begin next week with Nottinghamshire (captained by Australian Dan Christian) to face Leicestershire, Surrey to play Kent, Gloucestershire to face Northamptonshire and Sussex to take on Lancashire.