Whenever we talk about the Fast bowling history of a team only few teams have such a fabulous history of Fast bowling. Fast bowling is an integral part of any team. Without a genuine fast bowler the survival of a team is very difficult. Pakistan is blessed with marvelous bowling talent, not only in fast bowling but also in spin bowling deportment. Indeed, no other country has such a great potential. Since day first Pakistan has world class fast bowlers, who proved their skills in respective field. Here is a brief history of few stars of cricket galaxy.
Pakistan: A Country With Fabulous Fast Bowling Aptitude
Fazal Mahmood (1952 – 1962)
(The Hero of Oval): Fazal Mahmood was the member of Pakistan’s first international squad. He was regarded as the finest fast bowler of his country’s early years.
cricinfo.com says regardin Fazal “Tall and handsome, with a Comptonesque mop of hair that led him to feature in advertisements as Pakistan’s own Brylcreem Boy, Fazal’s ability to cut and seam the ball at a fair pace led him to be compared – in style and stamina – to England’s Alec Bedser”
He played in 34 test matches and took 139 wickets.The first Pakistani to pass 100 wickets, he reached the landmark in his 22nd match. He played a major role in first gaining Test status for the new nation and then establishing them as a Test match team. Fazal’s most memorable performance came on the 1954 tour of England, when he had a leading role as Pakistan won at the Oval to square the series. He took12/99 in the match, including 6/46 in the second innings
Khan Mohammad Khan (1952 – 1958)
He was also a member of Pakistan’s first Test team that played against India in 1952. He played in 13 Tests and took 54 wickets. He also holds the distinction of bowlingPakistan’s first ball and takingPakistan’s firstwicket in Test cricket. As an opening bowler who shared the new ball with Fazal Mahmood.
Sarfraz Nawaz (1969 – 1984)
(Inventor of Reverse Swing): former Pakistani pacer, who discovered reverse swing and was instrumental in Pakistan’s first Test series victories over India and England. He played 55 tests and 45ODIs and took 177 Test wickets at an average of 32.75. In 1978–79 he took 9/86 against Australia at Melbourne– including a spell of 7/1 off 33 balls – to give Pakistan a surprise victory. He played 45 ODIs and took 63 wickets.
Jalal-ud-Din (1982 – 1985)
Who played in 6 tests and 8 ODIs from 1982 to 1985. He took 11 tests wickets and 14 ODIs wickets. A specialist right-arm pace bowler, he was the first bowler to take a hat-trick in ODI cricket removing Rod Marsh, Bruce Yardley and Geoff Lawson, against Australia.
Imran Khan (1971 – 1992)
One of the Greatest All-Rounder in history of Cricket. Pakistan’s most successful cricket captain leading his country to victory at the 1992 Cricket World Cup, playing for the Pakistani cricket team from 1971 to 1992 At the age of 39, Khan led his team Pakistan to first and only World Cup victory in 1992. He played 88 test matches and took 362 wickets and 182 wickets in 175 ODIs.
cricinfo says about Imran: “As such he and TV completed the popularisation of the game in his country which Hanif Mohammad and the radio had begun. Thousands, if not millions, who had never dreamt of bowling fast on heartless baked mud suddenly wanted to emulate Imran and his lithe bounding run, his leap and his reverse-swinging yorker”.
Wasim Akram (1984 – 2003)
(King of swing): Genius who could change the game with both bat and ball. Wasim is regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers in the history of cricket. He holds the world record for most wickets in List A cricket with 881 and is second only to Sri Lankan off-spin bowler, Muttiah Muralitharan in terms of ODI wickets with 502. He is considered to be one of the founders and perhaps the finest exponent of reverse swing bowling. Wasim Akram had a very special talent to move the ball both ways in one delivery which is called “double swing of Wasim Akram”. No one in cricket history has done it so far. He played 104 test matches and took 414 wickets. Similarly he took 502 wickets in 356 matches. He also played 5 T20s and took 8 wickets.
Waqar Younis (1989 – 2003)
Borewala Express: Right-arm fast bowler widely regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers of all time.
cricinfo says: “The man who really put the reverse into swing. Waqar Younis bucked the 1980s trend of pitching fast and short by pitching fast and full. Not an obvious recipe for success until you factor in prodigious late inswing, which was designed to smash into the base of leg stump or the batsman’s toes”.
He holds the record for the youngest Pakistani Test captain and the third youngest Test captain in history. He played 87 tests and 262 ODI matches for Pakistan during his international cricket career from 1989 to 2003 and took 373 tests wickets and 416 ODIs wickets. He also played 7 T20 matches and took 5 wickets. Younis’ trademark was his ability to reverse swing the ball at high speed. he too 13 times 5 wickets hauls in ODIs, still a world record.
Aaqib Javed (1989 – 1998)
He was a right-handed medium fast pace bowler with the ability to swing the ball both ways. one of the most underrated bowler. Only Mistake he made “Playing in eara which was Wasim & Waqar’s era”. Aaqib played major role in absence of injured waqar younis in 1992 worldcup’s victory. He played 22 tests and 163 ODIs for Pakistan and took 54 tests and 184 ODIs wickets. Aaqib took a hat-trick in an ODI against India in October 1991. He remains the youngest player to have taken an ODI hat-trick. he took 7 wickets for 37 runs in this match, remain world record for several years.
Muhammad Zahid (1996 – 2003)
genuine fast bowler Muhammad Zahid: He took 11 wickets in his debut test against New Zealand, which included figures of 7 for 66 in the second innings. He became the only Pakistani to have taken 10 wickets or more on his debut. Besides this, he bowled an exceptional over to Brian Lara, who was then the premier batsman of the world: Lara played and missed the first three deliveries due to the sheer pace that Zahid generated, before edging the fourth ball for a caught behind. This performance caught the eyes of the cricketing pundits.
Having suffered a back injury and subsequently having to go through back surgery halfway through his career.
Shoaib Akhtar (1997 – 2011)
Rawalpindi Express: The speed star, Shoaib Akhtar is regarded as the fastest bowler in cricket history. He made his Test debut in November 1997 and played his first One Day International four months later. He played on Pakistan’s Cricket Team as an attacking fast bowler. He played 46 test matches, 163 ODIs and 38 T20s and took 178, 247 and 44 wickets respectively. Shoaib Akhtar is regarded as the fastest bowler in the history of cricket and has bowled fastest delivery officially recorded at a speed of 161.3 kph. he was the first bowler in the history of cricket to have been recorded to bowl over 100 mph. his career Numbers revealed so little than he was actually. most of his time wasted due to major controversies like “doubts about his action, doping charges, career-threatening injuries, beating up team mates, battle against PCB, long ban & fines.” one of Most Short Tempered Cricketers.
Muhammad Sami (2001 – 2012)
Very talented but inconsistent: Right hand fast bowler made his test debut in March 2001. He played 36 tests and took 85 wickets, he represent Pakistan in 85 ODIs and 5 T20s and took 121 wickets and 10 wickets respectively. Muhammad Sami was one of those who has never performed as their ability. His stats not suggesting his telnet. he is 8th fastest bowler in history.
Mohammad Asif (2005 – 2010)
Mohammad Asif right armed fast medium bowler made his debut in 2005 against Australia. He played 23 tests 38 ODIs and 11 T20s. he took 106 test wickets, 46 ODIs and 13 T20s wickets. one of the most gifted fast bowler but destroyed his career through spot-fixing scandal. Muhammad Asif was one of the finest exponent of new ball. some of the cricket pundits rated him 2nd to Glenn McGrath in art of using new ball especially. he could swing the ball like spinners.
Umar Gul (2003 – present)
Right-armed fast medium bowler, T20 specialist. He has gained fame as one of the most successful bowlers in Twenty20 cricket finishing as the leading wicket taker bowler in both the 2007 and 2009 Twenty20 World Championship tournaments. Umar Gul is the second highest wicket taker (74) in Twenty20 International cricket, only behind Saeed Ajmal. He won the Twenty20 International Performance of the Year 2013. He took 163 test wickets in 47 matches, 168 ODIs wickets in 119 matches and 74 T20 wickets in 52 matches.
He is a left-arm fast bowler, who opened the bowling in all formats of the game. He made his international debut in 2009 against Sri Lanka. He played 14 test matches and took 51 wickets and 25 wickets in 15 ODIs. He also took 23 wickets in 18 T20s. he was the most promising left-arm fast bowler after wasim akram. as Muhammad Asif, he had also destroyed his career through spot-fixing scandal.
lots of other fast bowlers pakistan has produced. Like Muhammad Akram, Muhammad Shabbir, Rana Navid Ul Hassan, and Now Junaid Khan, Muhammad Irfan, Muhammad Talha.