Zaheer Abbas, Pakistan’s batting great from yesteryears was on Saturday inducted in Pakistan Cricket Board’s Hall Of Fame. 74-year-old Abbas made his Test debut in 1969 and played his first one-day international in 1974. The right-handed middle-order batter scored 5062 runs in 78 Test matches at an average of nearly 45. He also scored 2572 runs in 62 ODIs at an average of 47.62. Abbas was part of the Pakistan team that reached the semi-final of the 1979 World Cup.
Abbas has the distinction of being the only Asian batter to have scored more than 100 centuries in first-class cricket, which includes 12 Test tons.
Abbas is the third Pakistan cricketer to be inducted in PCB’s Hall Of Fame after Fazal Mahmood and Wasim Akram. There are five more inductions to take place in due course.
The induction took place on day 1 of Pakistan’s second Test match against Australia at the National Stadium in Karachi.
“I feel humbled to have been recognised in such a respectful and honourable manner by my parent organisation at my home ground, during play of my favourite format of the game and in front of passionate cricket fans, who have also played an integral part throughout my cricketing career.
“It has been a privilege to have represented Pakistan for nearly two decades and contribute in the national side’s growth in terms of stature and reputation. It was a delight to play with and against some of the all-time greats in an era when cricket regulations and playing conditions were not as stringent as today. Of course, the opportunities were also limited as compared to today, but the rewards, appreciation and acknowledgement was always extremely high and satisfying,” Abbas was quoted as saying by Cricket Pakistan.
“Cricket has moved on from my playing days but it still remains a gentleman’s game. It gives me great pleasure and satisfaction to see that this beautiful sport remains in the safe and capable hands of modern day elite cricketers who, day in day out, give their very best in striving to continue to enhance the standard of this sport and in doing so, attract, inspire and motivate younger generation of cricketers.
“I am pleased to see a full-strength Australia side play at the National Stadium after 24 long years. I have been part of some great Tests against Australia and I hope that with this tour, the rivalry between two proud nations will revive which, in turn, will only help cricket become stronger.
“I want to thank the PCB, my family, friends and all my contemporaries who supported me in this memorable journey and helped me perform for this great country as well as my national, domestic and England teams,” the batting great added.
Topics mentioned in this article