During the fifth match of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 between South Africa and Afghanistan, commentator Mark Nicholas made an open-ended statement, saying most people would be surprised to see Shakib Al Hasan at the top of the ODI rankings list. For the record, the Bangladeshi all-rounder has been in the top three every single week for more 10 years. That's just brilliant.
If that's not enough to get impressed by the 32-year-old's consistency, here's one. On Sunday, he joined an elite list of all-rounders by becoming only the fifth player in ODI history to complete the double of 5000 runs and 250 wickets. Sanath Jayasuriya (13,430 runs and 323 wickets in 304 matches), Shahid Afridi (8,046 runs and 395 wickets in 273 matches), Jacques Kallis (11,579 runs and 273 wickets in 296 matches) and Abdul Razzaq (5,080 runs and 269 wickets in 234 matches) are the other four. And Shakib is the fastest of them all, in just 199 matches.
Having already scored 5,000 runs, Shakib entered the match needing a wicket to join the list. And he came sooner than expected. The slow left-arm orthodox bowler took just four balls to get the wicket, in the 20th over. He bowled Aiden Markram, who misjudged the undercutter from the crafty spinner.
Promoted to number three, the left-handed batsman scored 75 off 84 and added 142 runs with Mushfiqur Rahim to help Bangladesh to their highest ODI total of 330/6.