In a sensational display of pace bowling mastery, Mohammed Shami etched his name in cricket history with a breathtaking five-wicket haul against Sri Lanka during the 33rd match of the ICC World Cup 2023. This extraordinary performance not only contributed to India’s resounding victory but also propelled Shami to the zenith of Indian cricketing achievements.
In a devastating partnership with fellow pacers Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj, Shami orchestrated a stunning collapse of the 1996 World Cup champions at Mumbai’s iconic Wankhede Stadium. His exceptional bowling figures facilitated India’s commanding win by a staggering 302 runs.
What makes Shami’s feat even more remarkable is his ascent above bowling legends Zaheer Khan and Javagal Srinath, positioning him as India’s preeminent wicket-taker in the ODI World Cup. Shami’s phenomenal record now stands at 45 wickets in a mere 14 innings, eclipsing Zaheer Khan’s 44 wickets in 23 innings and Javagal Srinath’s 44 wickets in 34 innings at the World Cup.
Reflecting on Shami’s match-defining performance, his pivotal wickets included Charith Asalanka, Dushan Hemantha, and Dushmantha Chameera, reducing Sri Lanka to a mere 55 runs in just 19.4 overs. In the 17th over, Shami added to his tally by dismissing Kasun Rajitha, solidifying his status as India’s foremost wicket-taker in the ODI World Cup. Shami’s figures of five wickets for a mere 18 runs in 5 overs demonstrated his unmatched prowess.
Furthermore, India’s emphatic 302-run triumph under Shami’s leadership secured their position as the first team to advance to the semi-finals of the ICC World Cup. Shami’s remarkable performance was acknowledged as he was rightfully named the Player of the Match.
In Shami’s words, “I always focus on hitting the good areas and length. Very happy (on becoming India’s leading wicket-taker in World Cups) It’s very important to be in rhythm in white ball cricket and hit the good areas. If you hit the good areas with the new ball you will get assistance off the pitch, and for me, length matters a lot. The kind of support we get from the crowd, I want to thank each and every one of them. We also get a lot of support whenever we travel outside India as well. The dressing room is in a very good space,” as he graciously acknowledged the role of teamwork and dedication.
Mohammed Shami’s extraordinary achievement marks a significant chapter in India’s cricketing legacy, underlining the nation’s prowess in the world of cricket. His inspiring performance embodies the spirit of the sport and the relentless pursuit of excellence on the grandest stage of them all – the ICC World Cup.