Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Pakistan's New Leggie - Mansoor Amjad

He became the first bowler in history to pick up 3 wickets in his 1st over in international cricket and yet this fact went completely unnoticed at the end of Bangladesh's innings on Sunday.

Sure it was a 20-20 match. Sure it was against a lowly rated Bangaldesh. But it was an international match and it was quite a feat.
Mansoor Amjad, the leg spinner from Sialkot, had Mahmudullah stumped with this 2nd ball in international cricket. He followed that up by having Murtaza caught at long off with his 5th delivery and then cleaned up Shahadat Hossain with his 6th.
That was Mansoor's debut performance in the 20-20 match between Pakistan and Bangladesh on Sunday.
So why didn't anyone point this out? There was no mention by the commentators, there was no media coverage in the local Pakistan newspapers, nor any on Cricinfo.
I first heard of Mansoor Amjad in 2004 when he was part of the Pakistan U19 squad that won the U19 world cup. In that tournament, Mansoor was one of the leading wicket takers with 16 wickets at an average of 10.56 with a best of 4-28. To be precise, he was 5th on the list.
He was a fine leg spinner back then and went on to make his first class debut the same season as well.
Over the last 4 years Mansoor has performed averagely on the domestic scene. Over the last 2 years, his bowling declined and he transformed himself into a batsman who bowled some leg spin, much like Cameron White of Australia. As a batsman in the last 2 domestic seasons he knocked 4 centuries and 8 fifties in first class cricket.
I was surprised to say the least to see his name in the squad for the 20-20 match and even more so to see him make his debut that day. Considering that before Sunday he had played 13 20-20 domestic matches in which he had picked up a mere 4 wickets and scored 81 runs at an average of 10, definitely didn't make him a strong candidate to represent Pakistan at the 20-20 level.
Maybe Shoaib Malik's Sialkot connection had something to do with this.
However, Mansoor pounced on the opportunity and in the space of 6 deliveries managed to finish off the game picking up 3 wickets for 3 runs in his only over in international cricket.
Does he have a future playing for Pakistan?
With Shahid Afridi and Danish Kaneria in the limited overs and test line ups respectively, I doubt it. And to make it as a pure batsman he will have to do a whole lot more.
He's only 20 though and has plenty of cricket ahead of him.

Make your pitch on this post...

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2 Pitched:

  1. Jrod said...

    Like Cameron White, so he is balding, becoming a captain, and desperately happy that another leggie came into the side.

  2. Q said...

    Uncle J, the comparison ends at Mansoor being a leggie transforming himself into a batsman cos the bowling declined overtime.

    No baldspots, no where near captaincy, and no other leggie in the same domestic team.

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