Ijaz Ahmed (cricketer, born 1968)

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Not to be confused with Ijaz Ahmed (cricketer, born 1969).
Ijaz Ahmed
اعجاز احمد
Ijaz Ahmed.jpg
Personal information
Full name Ijaz Ahmed
Born (1968-09-20) 20 September 1968 (age 47)
Sialkot, Punjab, Pakistan
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Left-arm medium
International information
National side
Test debut (cap 107) 3 February 1987 v India
Last Test 27 March 2001 v New Zealand
ODI debut (cap 60) 14 November 1986 v West Indies
Last ODI 11 October 2000 v New Zealand
Career statistics
Competition Tests ODIs
Matches 60 250
Runs scored 3315 6564
Batting average 37.67 32.33
100s/50s 12/12 10/37
Top score 211 139*
Balls bowled 180 637
Wickets 2 5
Bowling average 38.50 95.20
5 wickets in innings
10 wickets in match n/a
Best bowling 1/9 2/31
Catches/stumpings 45/- 90/-
Source: Cricinfo, 4 February 2006

Ijaz Ahmed (Urdu: اعجاز احمد) (born 20 September 1968 in Sialkot) is a retired Pakistani cricketer who played 60 Tests and 250 One Day Internationals for Pakistan over a period from 1986 to 2001.

International career[edit]

Ijaz had the lowest batting average of the team, with a Test average of 38 and an ODI average of 32, but he did hit six Test centuries against the world's top-ranked side for much of his career, Australia – which is a record number of centuries by a Pakistani against Australia, shared with Javed Miandad.

However, in Test cricket he had a habit of being dismissed for low scores, as 33 of his 92 innings yielded single-figure scores and 54 of them yielded scores below 20.

Ijaz Ahmed came into the national side at the height of the Imran Khan era, and remained on the fringes for near a decade, despite several good scores, he struggled to find consistency, a trait for which his legendary captain had little patience, though Imran appreciated his hard work and determination per Wasim Akram. Dropped after the 1992 World Cup (true to his overshadowed nature he played in most of the games including the final, with few highlights, many people are unaware of his presence in the team), he worked on his game and came back strongly the following season and established himself at the pivotal "one down" position. He was competent if not spectacular in this role for many years, though he did play a few highly memorable knocks especially in ODIs. After the 1999 World Cup (where he performed poorly and was blamed for the batting collapse in the final) he was dropped, he returned after a few months, however by then the arrival of Younis Khan, a player who matched Ijaz's determination, but exceeded his talent and technique (though he is also in the unorthodox mould) had made Ijaz's place in the side at one down doubtful and indeed after a few matches against England and then New Zealand in 2000/2001, in which he was singularly unimpressive, he was dropped never to return.

He was a regular in the ODI team especially, as his 250 matches is the seventh-highest of all time in Pakistan, behind Shahid Afridi, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Wasim Akram, Saleem Malik, Younis Khan and Waqar Younis. He appeared in 4 World Cups and was a World Cup winner in 1992. Ijaz was a powerful hitter, especially on the leg side of the pitch.

Career achievements[edit]

A powerful hitter of the ball with his bat, Ijaz got popularity, after becoming the 2nd Pakistani Batsman who scored 10 ODI centuries after Saeed Anwar. He played some memorable innings against countries like, India, England, Australia, West Indies, Sri Lanka and South Africa. At Lahore, in 1997, Ijaz collapsed the Indian bowling attack by making a quick century of just 68 balls including 9 sixes, remaining not out for 139*, and this is his highest score in the ODI. In the following year, He again returned with his 132 against Zimababwe in the 3rd and decisive ODI of home series.

In Pepsi cup 1999, played in India, Ijaz helped his team to victory in the second round match against India by scoring 90 not out. Pakistan was given an easy target of 197, but the number of overs were reduced from 50 to 47, due to slow over rate by Pakistan. Initially Pakistan lost its first 3 wickets for just 21 runs, when Ijaz Ahamd joined his traditional partner Inzamam ul Haq and attained victory for their side, both remaining not out on 90 and 78 respectively.

In the same year after Pepsi cup, Pakistan cricket team visited Sharjah to participate in the tri-nation cricket tournament with England and India. In the opening match against England, Ijaz scored a memorable innings of 137 and was out just two runs short of his highest score which he has scored against India in 1997.

Test batting[edit]

In test cricket, Ijaz Ahmed was much significant with his bat. Though he appeared to be unreliable often, Ijaz scored 12 test centuries. Ijaz scored his first and only double century of test cricket against Sri Lanka, when he scored 211. This was the same match, in which Wasim Akram got his second wicket hat-trick, a match which Pakistan eventually won by an innings and 170 runs. Ijaz has also been the top runs maker from Pakistani side against South Africa.

The event of 21 April 1997[edit]

On 21 April 1997, in a Test match against Sri Lanka, Ijaz Ahmed was at the crease on 97, when the famous run out attempt by Sri Lankan fielder, Romessh Kaluwitharana, brought ambigouty in the decision. It was difficult for the umpires to tell whether Ijaz should be given run out or if it should be his partner Salim Malik. The TV replays suggested Salim Malik had been run out, that he but eventually the third umpire, K. T. Francis gave his decision against Ijaz Ahmed and so he remained short of his century. However, after repeated replays of the event, Ijaz Ahmad was called back to the crease and Salim Malik was declared as run out. After his return to crease, Ijaz successfully completed his century. This was the first time for a batsman to return from the pavilion to the crease, after being declared out since 1987. [1]

Ijaz as a fielder[edit]

Ijaz Ahmed is regarded as one of the best fielders Pakistan has ever produced. He was an excellent fielder, often inside the circle at square position and mid on. His best fielding in match against Australia in 1999 world cup, initial stage greatly restricted the overflow of runs by Australian batsmen in the final moments of the match. It was due to his best fielding that Pakistan won that match by 10 runs after a thrilling battle.

Isolation from the team and come back[edit]

Ijaz Ahmad was a regular member of the team on one down position, of 1999 cricket world cup played in England from 14 May to 20 June 1999. His performance appeared not too good. He also got injured in the first match of 1999 world cup, when he was hit on the leg by West Indian pacer, Dillon during a successful appeal for LBW at Bristol. This injury affected his performance in rest of the matches and he was dropped from the next match against Scotland. After the dramatic collapse of Pakistani batting line up in 1999 world cup final against Australia, Ijaz remained the top scorer of the innings with 22 runs. He was also the batsman who was surprisingly held responsible for the batting collapse in the final match. This regular succession of poor performances, led to isolation of Ijaz from the national team and so he was not a part of the national team in the Toronto Cricket Festival of 1999 against the West Indies and Sharjah Cup of late 1999. Though he was given a chance in test series against Australia and the Carlton & United Series against India and Australia, during which he performed well both in the test and one day series. In the third test, Ijaz Ahmad scored his 12th test century and sixth against Australia at Perth, a match which Pakistan eventually lost by an Innings and some runs. In the following triangular series, Ijaz Ahmad scored three half centuries, but still he was unable to take the confidence of selectors and was again dropped from the team for than a year.

Surprising come back[edit]

Following the captaincy crisis of the national team, in the absence of the injured captain, Moin Khan, The Pakistan Cricket Board surprisingly started giving indications of making Ijaz as the interim captain of the team for then the incoming Singapore Challenge series against New Zealand and South Africa. Nevertheless, he was not selected as captain but his come back in the team was confirmed after 14 months. So Ijaz Ahmad joined the team in Singapore in the absence of injured regular skipper, Moin Khan. Waqar Younis was leading the team on emergency basis. Ijaz Ahmad made a brilliant batting come back in the Singapore Challenge Series against New Zealand and South Africa. He scored a quick innings of 49 not out of just 21 balls in a rain affected match, which was reduced to 25 overs per side before toss. Ijaz's Innings helped Pakistan giving a tough target of 192 runs to New Zealand in 25 overs, a match which Pakistan eventually won by 29 runs. In the second match against the South Africans, he scored 67, a match which was won by Pakistan later on. Ijaz Ahamd remained Man of the Match in both matches and also remained the top scorer in every match of this tournament. But again it was his misfortune that beyond all this good performance, he was again dropped from then the incoming ICC Champions Trophy in 2002, and was unseen on the national side, for more than 7 months. He was again given a chance during Pakistan's cricket team tour to New Zealand in 2003, where he was selected for the test squad, but this time he didn't perform well and was dropped from then the incoming ODI series. He has never been a part of National Cricket team since then and eventually announced his formal retirement from both formats of cricket in late 2003.

International centuries[edit]

Key[edit]

Symbol Meaning
* Remained not out
dagger Man of the match
double-dagger Captained the Pakistan cricket team
Balls Balls faced
Pos. Position in the batting order
Inn. The innings of the match
S/R Strike rate during the innings
H/A/N Venue was at home (Pakistan), away or neutral
Date Match starting day
Lost The match was lost by Pakistan
Won The match was won by Pakistan
Drawn The match was drawn

Test cricket centuries[edit]

List of Test centuries
No. Score Balls Against Pos. Inn. S/R Venue H/A/N Date Result Ref
1 122 dagger 221  Australia 6 1 55.20 Iqbal Stadium, Faisalabad Home 23 September 1988 Drawn
2 121 331  Australia 5 4 36.55 Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne Away 12 January 1990 Lost
3 137 332  Australia 3 1 41.37 Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney Away 30 November 1995 Won
4 103 213  New Zealand 3 3 48.35 Lancaster Park, Christchurch Away 8 December 1995 Won
5 141 201  England 3 1 70.14 Headingley Stadium, Leeds Away 8 August 1996 Drawn
6 125 dagger 198  New Zealand 3 2 63.13 Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, Rawalpindi Home 28 November 1996 Won
7 113 245  Sri Lanka 3 2 46.12 R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo Away 19 April 1997 Drawn
8 151 337  West Indies 2 2 44.81 National Stadium, Karachi Home 6 December 1997 Won
9 155 282  Australia 3 2 54.96 Arbab Niaz Stadium, Peshawar Home 15 October 1998 Won
10 120 247  Australia 3 4 48.58 National Stadium, Karachi Home 22 October 1998 Drawn
11 211 372  Sri Lanka 3 2 56.72 Bangabandhu National Stadium, Dhaka Neutral 12 March 1999 Won
12 115 160  Australia 3 3 71.88 WACA Ground, Perth Away 26 December 1999 Lost

One Day International centuries[edit]

List of ODI centuries
No. Score Balls Against Pos. Inn. S/R Venue H/A/N Date Result Ref
1 124* 87  Bangladesh 4 1 142.52 Chittagong Stadium, Chittagong Away 29 October 1988 Won
2 102* dagger 100  Sri Lanka 3 2 102.00 Brisbane Cricket Ground, Brisbane Neutral 10 February 1990 Won
3 110 dagger 110  South Africa 5 1 100.00 Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, Rawalpindi Home 20 October 1994 Won
4 114* dagger 90  South Africa 3 2 126.66 Kingsmead, Durban Away 17 December 1994 Won
5 117 dagger 105  Zimbabwe 3 1 111.42 Arbab Niaz Stadium, Peshawar Home 3 November 1996 Won
6 139* dagger 84  India 1 2 165.47 Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore Home 2 October 1997 Won
7 117 112  India 4 1 104.46 National Stadium, Dhaka Neutral 18 January 1998 Lost
8 111 109  Australia 3 1 101.83 Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore Home 10 November 1998 Lost
9 132 dagger 103  Zimbabwe 3 1 128.15 Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, Rawalpindi Home 24 November 1998 Won
10 137 dagger 130  England 3 1 105.38 Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium, Sharjah Neutral 7 April 1999 Won

Coaching career[edit]

Ijaz Ahmad as a coach of Pakistan's Under 19 team[edit]

Ijaz Ahamd was appointed as the coach of Pakistan's under 19 cricket team on 20 October 2009 by the Pakistan Cricket Board.[2] It was under his coaching that the Pakistan's cricket team played brilliantly in the under 19 world cup. Pakistan's team reached final where they lost to Australia in New Zealand. However the overall performance of the team was quite good.

Coach of the National Team[edit]

After Pakistan's defeat against New Zealand at UAE in 2009's ODI series and resignation of Younis Khan from the captaincy, changes were made in the team, with Waqar Younis being installed as the coach of Pakistan's cricket team. After Pakistan was white washed by Australia in test, ODI and T20 matches in 2010, Ijaz Ahmad was selected as combined coach with Waqar Younis, a post which Ijaz Ahmad is currently serving on.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ijaz Ahmed in 1987 Cricket World Cup. Retrieved on 31-12-2011 Archived 24 April 2010 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ Ijaz Ahmed – U-19 Coach.Retrieved on 31-12-2011 Archived 23 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine.

External links[edit]