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Meet the Indian bat-maker who aided Iftikhar in scoring his maiden T20I fifty

After a plethora of impressive outings in the domestic circuit, Iftikhar Ahmed gained the trust of the Pakistani selection committee to be installed in the national team. The experienced player made the most of his chance against Australia as he went all guns blazing in the second game of the three-match T20I series.

While he started slowly, but the 29-year old showed his class after getting settled on the crease. Particularly, he smashed Kane Richardson to record a stunning innings which saw him getting an unbeaten 62 runs using just 34 balls.

However, it would be unwise to snatch away the credit of Shashi Samprathi who prepared the bat with which Iftikhar scored his maiden T20I half-century. On the eve of the game, the Peshawar born wasn’t happy with the condition of his bat, which induced him to have his bat fixed.

When Iftikhar met Shashi through Sanjay Sharma, he was impressed with the quality of the craftsmanship as he picked a bat from Shashi’s shop and have it customized for him. What is fascinating to know that Shashi, despite proving himself a great help in a tough situation, refused to take any money from Iftikhar, saying that the Pakistani player is his guest. The story inspired many as this story included people particularly from the two countries which are known as the arch-rivals.