A humble farmer from Sahaspur village in Amroha, Uttar Pradesh, Tousif Ali could bowl. He had four boys and a girl and among all four boys was Shami who also bowled fast. On September 3rd, 1990, Mohammed Shami was born. Outshining siblings, the international cricketer Shami becomes the right-arm fast-medium swing bowler to represent Bengal in domestic cricket. He would also further go on to play in the Indian Premier League, International Cricket, Test matches, and T20 Internationals.
Shami had an impressive and consistent bowling arm that could throw at 87 mph or approximately 140 km/hr. Not only was he fast, but his bowling style was also well deceptive. In January of 2013, the reverse-swing specialist made his debut against Pakistan, where he made a record bowling 4 maiden overs. Subsequently, in a Test debut against West Indies, in November 2013, he took a whopping five wickets. Recently, on 23rd January 2019, Mohammed Shami became the fastest Indian bowler to grab 100 ODI wickets.
Tousif Ali found Shami’s coach, Badruddin Siddique located 22 km away from the village where he practiced farming. But to make a career out of his son’s bowling abilities, he traveled all the way to Moradabad to get Shami a coach. Badruddin was equally impressed with the boy’s bowling prowess. The 15-year-old, to him, did not seem ordinary. Under his wings, for at least a year, he would prepare Shami for the upcoming UP trials, since Moradabad itself did not constitute of a cricket club. A hardworking youth, Shami never missed practice and did not believe in taking days off the game. Unfortunately, circumstances would not let him play in the U-19 trials. But Badruddin did not want the boy to miss out on a complete year and so asked his parents to send him to Kolkata, in 2005.
There Shami played for the Dalhousie Athletic Club and was immediately noticed for his talent by Debabrata Das, who has already served as an assistant secretary at the Cricket Association of Bengal. Surprised by Shami’s performance, he immediately drafted him into his own team known the Town Club. Here, Shami signed a contract of Rs. 75,000. As Shami did not have a place to stay at Kolkata, Das offered his own roof. Even though he did not get inculcated into the Under-22 team, Shami bowled representing the Town Club. Later, Das called Samarban Banerjee to watch Shami bowl. A highly enthralled Samarban would select him to play for the Under-22 Bengal team.
Debabrata Das went on to describe Shami as a non-greedy and meticulous human being. He had only one aim – the stumps. Shami loved the ball resounding against the stumps and wanted to hear that particular noise all the time. Even during his career, most of Shami’s wickets were bowled players. Throwing the ball just outside of the off stump or bowling with an upright seam, Shami always gets the ball to cut back inside, making a tricky maneuver.
Finally, Mohan Bagan happened so that Shami formally initiated into the Bengal team. Das knew that this was one of the top clubs in the region. It was also here that Sourav Ganguly would first face Mohammed Shami’s ball at the Eden Garden nets. It was after Ganguly’s ‘special care’ that the Bengal Ranji Trophy squad picked Shami up, in 2010.
Steady in his rise, Mohammed Shami went on to make a first-class debut against Assam in 2010, where he picked up three wickets. Later in 2012, his best performance earned him a place in India A squad bounded for West Indies. During an unofficial and friendly Test match in June 2012, against the West Indies A squad, he held a match-winning partnership at the 10th wicket playing with Cheteshwar Pujara.
After the 2012-13 Ranji Trophy match against Hyderabad, at Eden Gardens, he played Madhya Pradesh at the Holkar Cricket Stadium, Indore. Shami scored15 runs out of just 6 balls with an overall of 4/36 and 6/7 in the second innings, Eden. Along with Wriddhiman Saha, he helped his team win the match by 4 wickets. He displayed a superb performance against Madhya Pradesh as well. Though his team never won the match, he scored a hat-trick in the first innings itself, thus wiping out the tail.
In 2011, Shami signed in with KKR or Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League. He was coached by Wasim Akram. For the next two seasons thereafter, the franchise would retain him and in 2012, was even part of the winning team.
In 2014, after his impressive debut in 2013, the Delhi Daredevils bought him for ₹4.25 crore. Although the team did not do really well, he was still reserved by the franchise for the 2015 edition of the game. Bowling at a speed of 147.9 km/hr, and with a good pace, in January of 2018, he was bought over by the Delhi Daredevils after which, the Kings XI Punjab would buy him over as a preparation for the 2019 Indian Premier League.
|Full Name:||Mohammed Shami|
|Date of Birth:||09-03-1990|
|Birth Place:||Amroha, Uttar Pradesh, India|
|Hometown:||Amroha, Uttar Pradesh, India|
|Height:||5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)|
|Siblings:||Brother – Mohammed Haseeb and 2 more and 1-sister|
|Bowling Style:||Right-arm fast medium|
|ODI Debut: ||6 January 2013 v Pakistan|
|Test Debut:||21 November 2013 v West Indies|
|T20 Debut:||21 March 2014 v Pakistan|
|ODI Shirt No:||11|
|T20I Shirt No:||11|
2012–2013 Kolkata Knight Riders (squad no. 11)
2014–2018 Delhi Daredevils (squad no. 11)
RECORDS & ACHIEVEMENTS
Shami maintained an impressive ODI career replacing Ashok Dinda, his Bengal Teammate to play for India’s series against Pakistan. He played a third ODI, which was his debut, at Delhi, in 2013. From 9 overs, he had produced 1/23, which was pretty tidy. India won this by 10 runs. Then came the Australian tour of India in October 2013 wherein the fourth match he took 3 wickets after sitting on the bench for the first three. He even played for India in the 2015 World Cup, where he took 4 wickets against Pakistan in the first match. He was even awarded the Man of the Match for 8–2–35–3.
Rising to prominence in a quick and steady manner, he had the ability to maintain slower economies in the ODIs that was liked by everyone. His Test debut saw him haul 5 wickets, which was the highest by an Indian bowler. Shami is also the second fastest Indian bowler to have taken 50 ODI wickets.