ANI Photo | Shabnam Shakil reflects on bowling to Ellyse Perry, Sophie Devine on debut

For Shabnam Shakil who is debuting for the Adani Sportsline-owned Gujarat Giants in the Women’s Premier League (WPL), life now at the age of 16 is much more than that of the storied high school.
What makes it even more special for her is her contribution to the record-breaking win of Gujarat Giants who put up a massive 199/5 against Royal Challengers Bangalore.
The Giants went on to win by 19 runs, setting the highest target of WPL 2024, 200 runs, and Shabnam bowled 3 overs, giving away 27 runs.
Looking back at her first game, Shabnam said, “I had the support of captain Beth Mooney and the rest of my team, so that helped me play with confidence. I am happy the day went well.”
Shabnam, who hails from Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh was part of the team that won the U-19 T20 World Cup in South Africa in 2023.
“My first delivery in WPL is something I will always remember. It was a big moment for me. I got an edge, and even though it wasn’t a catch for the keeper, it was a good start to the over, which felt nice,” she said.
After taking Sophie Devine by surprise off her first delivery, Shabnam went on to maintain control during her spell, keeping both the New Zealander and Ellyse Perry in check.
“Devine and Perry have so much experience, as much as my age probably, and I feel happy to have been able to bowl to them. I was able to bowl with confidence and be myself. I wasn’t thinking it was Perry or Devine at the crease, I just thought of them as batters in the middle,” the 16-year-old said.
Shabnam, who joined Gujarat Giants as a 15-year-old, has impressed everyone in the squad. Speaking after the Giants’ win against RCB, skipper Beth said, “She has lots of energy and is always smiling during training. But she has got that bit of aggression and bowled really well; you wouldn’t know it’s her first game. We thought let’s bring her in and see what she can do; it was a really impressive performance from someone so young.” (ANI)

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