Teen Naseem sur­vives fiery bap­tism

Mercury (Hobart) - - SPORT -

AN ex­tra­or­di­nary de­but for 16-year-old Naseem Shah started with an emo­tional pre­sen­ta­tion of his first Test cap for Pak­istan and in­volved him dig­ging out a hat-trick ball from one of the world’s lead­ing bowlers on hos­tile turf.

It cul­mi­nated with the teen fend­ing at a short ball and giv­ing Mitchell Starc a re­turn catch to end Pak­istan’s in­nings at 240 and fin­ish the first day of the se­ries.

Naseem’s in­clu­sion in Pak­istan’s XI for the first Test at the Gabba made the rookie fast bowler the youngest player to make his Test de­but in Aus­tralia.

It all hap­pened lit­tle more than a week af­ter his mother’s death in Pak­istan, and Naseem wiped away tears af­ter one his coun­try’s great­est bowlers, Waqar You­nis, pre­sented him with his cap be­fore the start of play yes­ter­day.

It was as daunt­ing a de­but as he could have re­ceived, with Aus­tralian fast bowler Josh Ha­zle­wood say­ing it would be in­tim­i­dat­ing for any­one.

Naseem got off the mark, hit a Starc full-toss to the boundary, and put on 13 for the last wicket.

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