“My first delivery in WPL is something I will always remember”, says Shabnam Shakil

Shabnam Shakil made her debut for Gujarat Giants in the Women’s Premier League (WPL) 2024 season, marking her as the youngest player ever to play in the league. At the age of 16, this right-arm pacer prodigy hails from Visakhapatnam and has left seasoned players awestruck with her fierce bowling and invincible determination.

"My first delivery in WPL is something I will always remember", says Shabnam Shakil
“My first delivery in WPL is something I will always remember”, says Shabnam Shakil

Shabnam Shakil’s journey to the WPL has been nothing short of remarkable. At the tender age of 15, she was already making impacts, delivering at speeds of up to 110kph. Her passion for the sport is evident, with cricket flowing in her veins as her father is an avid cricketer himself.

With a burning desire to bowl faster and harder, Shabnam’s relentless pursuit of excellence has led her to this momentous instance of debuting at WPL. Her philosophy is simple yet profound

In an interview with Female Cricket, she mentioned, “From the day I started playing cricket, my only aim was to bowl as fast as possible. Gradually I developed good bouncers. I aim at the batter’s ribs when I am bowling.”

Shabnam’s rise in the cricketing world is a witness to her immense talent and dedication. Having already tasted success as part of the team that won the U-19 T20 World Cup in South Africa, her ability to generate speed and accuracy sets her apart on the field. Before being rested for the practice match against Australia, she claimed three wickets in three games against New Zealand and four wickets in two games against South Africa, in U19 Twenty20 (T20) games.

She made a significant debut for Gujarat Giants as not only did she become the youngest player in the league’s history, but she also made an immediate impact on the field.

In a record-breaking match against Royal Challengers Bangalore, where the Giants set the highest target of WPL 2024, 200 runs, Shabnam Shakil showcased her talent by contributing to her team’s victory with an impressive bowling performance. Despite her young age, she bowled with confidence, demonstrating maturity beyond her years against the seasoned players of the game, giving away 27 runs from 3 overs.

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In her debut match, Shabnam Shakil left seasoned veterans like Sophie Devine and Ellyse Perry in awe with her skill and composure. Speaking about her experience bowling to such renowned players, Shabnam remarked… “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.”

Shabnam Shakil reflected on the significance of her inaugural delivery in the Women’s Premier League with heartfelt sentiment. For her, the moment stands as an unforgettable memory, marking the commencement of a journey filled with determination and passion.

She mentioned, “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.”

Reflecting on her debut, Shabnam expressed gratitude for the support she received from her captain, Beth Mooney, and the rest of her team. Her performance did not go unnoticed by her teammates, with the skipper praising her exceptional talent and composure under pressure.

Star Australian batter, Beth mentioned, “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.”

As Shabnam keeps leaving her mark on the game, her journey serves as an inspiration to aspiring cricketers everywhere. With her talent, determination, and unwavering spirit, she has the ability, will, and unwavering spirit to succeed in the sport.

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Here are some fan reactions to debut of Shabnam Shakil

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