February 18, 1990, Johannesburg, Gauteng
Right hand bat
Left arm wrist spin
A left-arm wristspin bowler with ample variations and a good googly, Tabraiz Shamsi emerged as South Africa were starting to warm to the wave of spinners being produced at domestic levels, although it took a while for him to come through.
Shamsi bounced between the Highveld and Kwa-Zulu Natal and pushed for a place at franchise level after a strong 2013-14 season for Easterns. He took 47 wickets at 20.02 to finish third in the three-day cup wicket-takers' list, and then played five matches in the 2014-15 franchise 20-over competition where caught the eye of the touring West Indians, who were visiting South Africa that summer.
In 2015, Shamsi was bought by Caribbean Premier League franchise St Kitts and Nevis Patriots, where Eric Simons was coach. There, Shamsi rose to some prominence, taking 11 wickets at 13.27 in the seven matches he played.
More regular opportunities in franchise cricket came the next season and Shamsi took them. He finished as the leading spinner in South Africa's first-class competition in the 2015-16 summer, in which he took 41 wickets at 19.97 in Titans' title-run. In 2016, he was picked up by the IPL's Royal Challengers Bangalore as a replacement player for the injured Samuel Badree which meant that Shamsi had played in two T20 leagues before picked for the national side.
His ODI debut finally came in a triangular series in the Caribbean in June 2016. That same year he made his Test debut against Australia in Adelaide and the following June, he played his first T20 international. But Shamsi struggled to find a regular place in the South African side, with Keshav Maharaj established as the Test spinner and Imran Tahir their white-ball specialist. Shamsi was part of the 2019 World Cup squad and played two matches but it was only after Tahir's ODI retirement after the 2019 World Cup that Shamsi came into his own.
In the 2019-20 summer, he finished second on the Mzansi Super League wicket-charts and was a star performer in the Paarl Rocks' tournament-winning campaign and was afforded a regular run in white-ball series against England and Australia. In addition to his ability to take wickets, he also demonstrated the capacity to hold an end, something South Africa have always wanted from their spinners.
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