Fawad ka Alam

Fawad Alam - Pakistan Cricketby Asjad Khan

Consistency has been the rampant issue with the Pakistani Cricket team, yet the treatments that has been dished out by Pakistani team officials and PCB to Fawad Alam has been utterly consistent. Fawad has been a model of professionalism and commitment all the way through. Hailed as the Replacement of Inzimam ul Haq and Pakistani replica to Mike Hussey and Michael Bevan, Fawad has always been on the fringes of the team. Yet he never seems to get a decent enough chance in the team. Whenever he gets in, he never gets to bat or bats with couple of over left and with the tail end batsman. Yet the Chap never complains.

A star of Under 19 world cup came into the lime light with a five wicket haul and fitting fifty for Karachi dolphins in domestic T20 Finals. Called over in the Senior Cap, got his debut against Srilanka after a disaster of a world cup campaign of Pakistan. Caught of the 1st ball brilliantly by Fernando, Fawad had a bad start. He wasn’t given the chance to bowl. After a lapse of 9 ODIs Fawad was recalled against India, with the Series lost. He scored a quick fire 32 of 17 balls batting at number 7 and bowled with precision completing his quote of over decently to help Pakistan regain pride. A run of sorts was given to him against Zimbabwe and Bangladesh, but didn’t get any opportunity to bat as either the match was already over with very less runs needed or 50 overs almost completed. In these matches whenever he bowled, the return was satisfactory if not glittering.

In the Asia cup, Fawad was in the side against India, wasn’t given the chance to Bat and was sacrificed against blistering Sehwag and Co with the ball. With all the bowler getting hammered and Umar Gul unfit, Fawad was called on to ball. Against the minnows of Hong Kong the mighty Pakistanis were reeling, Fawad scored a fighting fifty and got Pakistan out of the depths it had never seen. Again after a gap, Fawad was given a chance against West Indies, scored a polite 25. Dropped once more finally got his chance, when a courageous and brave Yonus Khan, thrust upon his trust in this ultimate team player.

Already one nil down Struggling in the 2nd test Pakistan was on their knees when Fawad was in the middle fighting it out. Yonus was sitting in the Dressing room, when he took a cricket ball and wrote Alam debut 100 and signed it, Fawad made 19 out of 90 of team total. The confidence instilled in him by Yonus paid off in the 2nd innings where he scored an odds defying 168. The most runs by a Pakistani on debut at a foreign land. A delighted Fawad was given that ball after the century by his inspirational captain. The next match he respectable scores. The ODIs against Srilanka weren’t the best for Fawad yet, he was better than the so called more gifted players.

After such a wonderful performance against Srilanka in tests, Fawad was dropped after just one failure against New Zealand. The Former Captain Malik and openers struggled for form all tour, but the Self defensive Captain Mohammad Yosuf, may be thought Fawad as a threat to his own place in the side. Sent home during the Australian test series, Fawad returned for the ODIs and was head and shoulders above his more star valued team mates. He scored his career best in the last ODI. All this while Fawad carried drinks all the time and was brilliant when ever was called for substitute fielding. He took breath taking catches, made run outs, saved boundaries. A sight hardly seen by the Pakistani team supporters. The most alarming fact is that during his entire career Fawad has never batted above number 5 and that only once. He batting order has forever been changing and going downwards. He has been for ever been a carried as a liability on the team.

If ever a talent was wasted, that would be Fawad’s in the T20s. never considered a big hitter inspite of that he was forced to bat very low down the order, when there was no chance for him to shine. Out of 21 T20s he played in 7 of them he wasn’t even given a chance to bat and in 15 of them he wasn’t given an opportunity to ball. He was picked for the T20 world cup and played in the Semi Final against New Zealand and picked up 2 wickets in his allotted four overs. Despite this immaculate performance Fawad was dropped from the final and replaced by Yasir Arafat, who ironically gave away 10 an over and Pakistan lost by 4 runs. Everybody seems to remember the one shot of Misbah; nobody questions why this selection blunder was made.

Despite his limitation as a dasher late down the order, Fawad single handed snatched a win out of a straggling situation with a sparkling 8 ball 23 against Srilanka, this could have changed the luck of any player but not the jinxed Fawad. The management persisted with their own ways of nullifying this boy’s talent. In the following T20s Fawad wasn’t given a chance to excel as he was batted at number six. Seven and eight when the team had already consumed majority of its overs.

One memory Fawad could savor and relish all his life shall be the T20 World cup in 2009. He shall be remembered for his unswerving and brilliant fielding. Dint get any chance to bat and got only one over in the Semi final, where he was clobbered for 15. Since then he has been in and out of the team without being given an opportunity to impress. Fawad has been used as an escape goat for the team. Whenever there is a loss, the one to suffer was Fawad. He was dropped irrespective of his performance.

After a good quality ODI series against Australia in Australia, Fawad wouldn’t be blamed to believe that finally he’ll be given a run in the side. Yet the World cup in West Indies came and went nothing changed for the lad. The Asia Cup could have been an ideal opportunity for the Left hander, yet he wasn’t even selected. Three completely new players were selected and out of whom nobody could leave a serious impression.

With Yonus and Yosuf out of the side for England series, Fawad would have been a perfect selection as he has been carrying drinks for long enough. But the selectors had other ideas. He was sent for the two T20s to substitute for his team mates in the field and was called back home. The tried, tested and failed combination of Imran Farhat and Yasir Hameed was recalled.

This tells a story of a man who never complains. Here by I being a fan of Pakistan Cricket, question the logic behind such decision made by PCB. Give the lad a chance if he has it in him, he will succeed. The logic of grooming a player and then kicking him out when the chance arrives can only be explained by PCB. The influential players such as Faisal Iqbal and Mohammad Hafeez seem to be in the team forever, with averages in the 20s. Fawad deservers a proper run in the team more than anybody. Give him a break…it’s been long enough. These kinds of unjust selections make a player run away from the national side. This is where ICL and other leagues come into play. Let Fawad Alam grow as a cricketer.

Trackbacks Comments
  • Aemon

    Awesome article, described each and everything, Fawad Alam is the future star and potential captain for Pakistan. One of the 2 of the most deserving batters consistently ignored along with his favourite captain Younus.

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