Pride of Pakistan – Waqar Hassan

by on August 31, 2010
in Sports in Pakistan

Pakistani cricketer Waqar Hasan

Waqar Hassan was a stylish stroke maker of Pakistan and the backbone of the Pakistan cricket team during its early days. Cricket is a passion in South Asia, and Pakistan has produced some of the finest cricketers of all time. Waqar Hassan is one of the legends of this sport in Pakistan.

Waqar Hassan made his debut at the age of 17 against India in 1952-53. Though the rest of Pakistan’s batting line up failed miserably in the third test against India, Waqar Hassan stood out with 81 runs and 65 runs respectively. He again played a match saving innings at Calcutta.

His brilliant form continued and against the New Zealand, Waqar Hassan put up a 308 run partnership with Imtiaz Ahmed when Pakistan was 6 wickets down for 111 runs. Pakistan won the match in a close finish.

being a reliable batsman, Waqar Hassan was also an agile fielder at the cover area. Waqar Hassan played 21 test matches for Pakistan and scored 1071 runs including one century. In first class cricket, he played 99 matches with 4741 runs with 8 centuries.

Waqar Hassan made an early exit from the cricket scene to concentrate on his business. He however remained associated with cricket as a member of the advisory council, selector and manager of the national team to tournaments played in Sharjah.

Pride of Pakistan – Imtiaz Ahmed

by on August 30, 2010
in Sports in Pakistan

Famous cricket player of Pakistan Imtiaz Ahmed

Imtiaz Ahmed was also a member of the first ever cricket team of Pakistan. Born and educated in Lahore, Imtiaz showed interest in cricket from a very early age. In those days there was no concept of coaching; natural talent, lots of practice, tough competition at school and college level and guidance from seniors nurtured the young talent.

Imtiaz Ahmed was the first wicketkeeper of Pakistan. He was also a hard hitter of the ball with hook shots his forte. Imtiaz was a compulsive striker of the ball; a habit which cost him his wicket many times when his score was in 90s.

World records and Imtiaz Ahmed go hand in hand. He was the first wicketkeeper ever to score a double century, he holds the record of 7 catches in the match against England at the Oval in 1954, and he was also the first Asian cricketer to score a triple century against an international team. The double century against New Zealand set many records, the first wicketkeeper to score a test double, the highest eighth wicket partnership and the highest number of runs scored by a no. 8 batsman. His triple century came against the Commonwealth side which was touring India in 1951. Imtiaz was then a part of the Indian Prime Minister XI.

Imtiaz Ahmed could bat at any position from opener to number 8. He played 41 test matches for Pakistan and scored a total of 2079 runs averaging at 29.28. He took 77 catches behind the wickets and stumped 16 players.

After retiring from cricket, Imtiaz served as an administrator in the PAF School of Physical Fitness in Peshawar. He also coached the women’s cricket team which defeated West Indies and Sri Lanka. Imtiaz Ahmed was bestowed the prestigious Pride of Performance award in 1966.

Pride of Pakistan – Zaheer Abbas

by on August 30, 2010
in Sports in Pakistan

Popular Pakistani cricket player Zaheer Abbas

Zaheer Abbas is perhaps the greatest batsman Pakistan has produced. Nicknamed as the “Run Machine”, there was simply no stopping him when he settled on the crease and struck boundary after boundary watched by helpless bowlers and equally helpless fielders. He played with ease off both back foot and front foot and his stylish footwork combined with powerful wrists; perfect timing and precision made him the great run getter.

Zaheer Abbas’s career is punctuated by many records. He made his debut in test cricket in 1969 against New Zealand and his ODI debut in 1974 against England. In his second test played at Edgbaston, against England in 1971, he scored double century (274 runs); the fourth highest score by a Pakistani cricketer. The double century marked the beginning of an illustrious career in which he scored a total of 5062 runs in 78 test matches with an average of 44.79 runs. His career best include 4 double centuries two of them against England. Zaheer Abbas was associated with the English county Gloucestershire for 13 years. During this long span, he scored almost thirty five thousand runs at an impressive average of 51.54. Zaheer Abbas is also the first and only Asian cricketer so far to have score a century of centuries in first class cricket. His ODI average is 48 and he stands second on the list of All Time ICC ODI rankings.

His ability to get runs against any opposition earned him the title of Asian Bradman. Zaheer Abbas was named the Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1972. The government of Pakistan in acknowledgement of his brilliance awarded him the Pride of Performance award.

Pride of Pakistan – Javed Miandad

by on August 30, 2010
in Sports in Pakistan

Famous Pakistani cricket player Javed Miandad

Javed Miandad is the most prolific batsman Pakistan has produced. Miandad was born in 1957 in Karachi where he received his early education. Miandad’s cricketing career began in 1975 from an ODI match against West Indies. The following year, he made his test debut from a series against New Zealand. Miandad scored a century in his very first test match and later scored a double century in the same series. Honor and a world record (youngest player ever to achieve a 100 and a test double) cemented his position in the team. From then onwards Miandad has entertained the cricket lovers all over the world with his classy shots. He played all over the field with reverse sweep and square cuts being his favorite shots.

Miandad was a genius; he knew how to score runs under any circumstances and on every type of pitch. He has won many matches for Pakistan. As long as he was on the pitch, Pakistan had a chance of victory even though circumstances suggested otherwise. He kept his cool and analyzed the areas where runs could be scored. The six he hit at Sharjah against India immortalized him. Miandad was also a fast runner and stole cheeky singles. He also saved a lot of boundaries and was often called “a panther in the field”.

Miandad has many records to his credit. He scored six double centuries and has the highest number of fifties in ODI. He scored 23 centuries and 43 half centuries in his test career spanning over 17 years. He is the only player to have made 6 appearances in 6 consecutive World Cup Tournament.

Miandad also served as the coach of Pakistan cricket team a three times after retiring as a player. Miandad was one of the Wisden Cricketers of the year in 1982. He is ranked 44th among the best cricketers of all times by the ESPN Legend of Cricket. Miandad’s name is also in the Hall of Fame at Lords.

Pride of Pakistan – Jansher Khan

by on August 16, 2010
in Sports in Pakistan

Famous and greatest Pakistani squash player Jansher Khan

Jansher Khan is another squash player from Pakistan who has dominated the squash scene for many years. The former world number 1 was born in Noakili a town near Peshawar on 15th June 1969. His brother Mohibullah Khan (also ranked World Number 2) and Atlas Khan were also great squash players. When Jansher entered the squash arena, another Pakistani player Jehangir Khan was the World Number 1 player who totally dominated the squash scene. The five and a half years long reign of Jehangir Khan ended when Ross Norman of New Zealand defeated him in the World Open Championship in 1986. With Jehangir’s defeat, people thought that Pakistan had lost its supremacy over squash but Jansher was quick to restore the honor when he beat Australian Chris Dittmar in 1987 to win the coveted World Championship title for the first time. Jansher had earlier defeated Jehangir in the semi finals.

From then onwards all the major squash championship titles yo-yoed between Jehangir and Jansher. They played a number of matches and out of the 37 big events; Jansher won 19 whereas Jehangir was victorious 18 times. Jansher has 8 World Championships, 6 British Open, 6 Hong Kong Open and 10 Pakistan Open titles to his credit. During his time, Jansher played against some of the big names of the squash world and was victorious most of the time.

Jansher’s personal life was marred by many controversies but his dedication, devotion and professionalism towards squash remains unmatched. The winner of 99 international titles and the six times world number 1 announced his retirement from Squash in 2001.

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