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Fakhar Zaman named ICC Player of the Month for April 2023

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DUBAI: Pakistan opener Fakhar Zaman on Tuesday won the ICC Player of the Month award for April 2023 after his outstanding performances in the recently-held home series against New Zealand.

The left-handed batter overcame tough competition from Sri Lanka spin wizard Prabath Jayasuriya, and emerging New Zealand batter Mark Chapman to clinch the award.

The 33-year-old scored back-to-back centuries in the first two ODIs between Pakistan and New Zealand and made his claim to a host of individual records during the series.

He became the fastest batter not just from the country but from Asia to complete 3000 ODI runs and just the fourth Pakistan batter after Saeed Anwar, Zaheer Abbas and Babar(twice) to hit three centuries in three straight games.

Fakhar Zaman played a marathon knock of 180 not out – the highest by any Pakistan batter in a successful run chase – in the second ODI in Rawalpindi to help the Green Shirts chase down their second-highest total in ODIs.

He displayed similar exploits in the first match at the same venue where he scored 117 to lead the way for Pakistan in their 289-run chase.

Following his run-scoring spree, Fakhar also moved to the no.2 spot behind skipper Babar Azam on the ICC ODI Men’s Players’ Rankings.

The left-hander started the month with a rapid 47 in the first T20I in Lahore against New Zealand, playing a part in the home side’s thumping 88-run victory.

“It is truly an honour for me to be named ICC Player of the Month for April,” said Fakhar as quoted by the ICC.

“This month has been one of the highlights of my career and it was an amazing feeling to play in front of my own people in Lahore, Rawalpindi and Karachi.

“I really enjoyed scoring back-to-back centuries in Rawalpindi, but my favourite was the 180 not out in the second match.

“I hope to continue the momentum leading into the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, and make Pakistan cricket fans happy and proud with my performances.”

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