Ijaz Ahmed

Occupation:

Professional Sportsman

Designation: Batsman
Institution / Org:

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Ijaz Ahmed (born September 20, 1968 in Sialkot) was a Pakistani cricketer who played 60 Tests and 250 One Day Internationals for Pakistan over a period from 1986 to 2001.

Ijaz did not have the highest batting averages of the team, with a Test average of 37 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 fifth-highest of all time in Pakistan, behind Wasim Akram, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Saleem Malik 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.


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