Ultimate Test XI Profile: Wasim Akram

By May 13, 2020
Wasim Akram Wasim Akram

Wasim Akram is the best left-arm fast bowler of all time. He has mastered all types of deliveries, slower balls, inswingers, outswingers, seaming in, seaming out, he could do it all at will it seemed. On some occasions he would swing it one way, then seam it another, leaving batsmen in a quandary about what to do. To top it off, Akram had a vicious bouncer that came from imperceptible extra effort.

Jimmy Adams, a stodgy defensive player from the West Indies, who at one time was the world’s best Test batsman, said Akram was the most difficult bowler he has ever had to navigate, rating an unbeaten 48 he scored against him in a match where the Pakistani pacer took 11 wickets on his way to 398, as the best he’s ever played.

Akram also formed one of the most dangerous Test duos in the history of the game with a certain Waqar Younis and it is no surprise that the latter would make a list like this as well.

The two would open with terrifying spells, then as the ball got older would return to unleash reverse swing on their opponents. Together, the two would take 559 wickets in just 61 Tests, just as dangerous, if not more so than the great West Indies pairing of Courtney Walsh and Curtly Ambrose which yielded 421 in 49. Akram, Imran Khan, and Younis are the only three Pakistani bowlers to take more than 350 wickets in Test cricket.

Akram’s only failing may have come with the bat. He was the natural successor to Khan but though he proved to be just a good a fast bowler, his average of 22.64 is well below what his talent would suggest.

Akram has three Test centuries and seven 50s in his 104 matches, with a best of 257 not out against Zimbabwe in Sheikhupura.

  

Career Statistics

Full name: Wasim Akram

Born: June 3, 1966, Lahore, Punjab

Major teams: Pakistan, Hampshire, Lahore, Lancashire, Pakistan Automobiles Corporation, Pakistan International Airlines

Playing role: Bowler

Batting style: Left-hand bat

Bowling style: Left-arm fast

 

 

Test Career: Pakistan (1985-2002)

Mat    Inns    Balls      Runs    Wkts    BBI        BBM        Ave      Econ   SR      4w     5w      10w

104     181     22627    9779      414      7/119    11/110     23.62    2.59    54.6     20      25        5

 

Career Highlights

  • Most wickets by a left arm fast bowler in Tests (414)
  • Joint 3rd most Man of the Match Awards (17)
  • Averaged 23.62
  • Highest score as a number 8 in Tests (257)
Paul-Andre Walker

Paul-Andre is the Managing Editor at SportsMax.tv. He comes to the role with almost 20 years of experience as journalist. That experience includes all facets of media. He began as a sports Journalist in 2001, quickly moving into radio, where he was an editor before becoming a news editor and then an entertainment editor with one of the biggest media houses in the Caribbean.

Related items

  • 'He's looking like the Brathwaite of old'- Windies skipper Holder encouraged by opener's form heading into Test series 'He's looking like the Brathwaite of old'- Windies skipper Holder encouraged by opener's form heading into Test series

    West Indies captain Jason Holder believes opening batsman Kraigg Brathwaite could be on the verge of rediscovering his best form, ahead of the start of the series against New Zealand.

    The 28-year-old had shown great promise alongside Shai Hope at the top of the order, scoring 134 and 95 when the West Indies successfully chased down 322 for a memorable win at Headingley in 2017.

    Brathwaite then suffered a dip in form, averaging 25.33 in his last 20 Tests ahead of the England series this year.  His struggles included poor showings against India and Afghanistan.  The player did show a flicker of returning to form during the team’s last Test tour against England where he scored two half-centuries.  Brathwaite reached 65 in the first and got 75 in the second but, however, also had other innings scores of 4, 12, 1, and 19 to average 21.

    The opener though, looked good in the team’s warm-up matches against New Zealand A, where he scored 246 in the second warm-up match.  The performance has encouraged the West Indies captain.

    “It’s good to see our opening batsmen, including Kraigg, getting some scores.  I thought he shaped up really well in England, he good a few half-centuries, got a few starts and he’s starting to look like the Kraigg Brathwaite of old,” Holder told CWI media.

    “He’s obviously been a banker for us over the years, he’s had a lean patch over the last couple of years but to see him coming back into stride the way he has.  I was remarking to one of the coaches that the innings I saw in Queenstown, the double hundred, was one of the most fluent innings I have seen from him.  It reminded me of a Test match innings he played in Hobart where he got 97 in the second innings that was one of the most fluent innings I’ve ever seen from Kraigg but this one was similar,” he added.

    “For me, his balance looks really good and he is striking the ball really well.  So, let’s hope he can continue in that vein and get us off to some really good starts.”  

  • Ambrose questions Andre Russell's commitment to West Indies cricket Ambrose questions Andre Russell's commitment to West Indies cricket

    Andre Russell has been lighting up the Lankan Premier League with both bat and ball delighting his many fans around the world.

  • 'WI Test team in a good place' - Windies coach Simmons does not expect poor T20 showing to affect morale 'WI Test team in a good place' - Windies coach Simmons does not expect poor T20 showing to affect morale

    West Indies coach Phil Simmons believes the Test team is in a ‘good place’ ahead of the start of the two-match series against New Zealand, which bowls off on Wednesday.

    The team’s tour of New Zealand began with a T20 series last week but they did not experience a lot of joy after being easily swept aside 2-0 by the Kiwis in a three-match series.  Simmons, however, does not expect any follow-on negative effect for the four-day team and admits he has been encouraged by their performance in the warm-up games.  The performances with the bat in the warm-up matches will have been particularly encouraging for the team, which saw the batting line-up post scores of 366 and 571.

    “The T20 and the Tests are different.  The Test team has done well in Queenstown and enjoyed a tough four-day game.  Now, they are coming into the Test series with some confidence, especially with the batsmen and we haven’t had that in a while,” Simmons told windiescricket.

    “I think the Test team is in a good place, I’m disappointed with the T20 team but looking forward to the Test series…I don’t think the results of the T20 will affect how they think,” he added.

    The Test series is also expected to be a tough challenge for the regional team who has not won a series in New Zealand since 1995.

     

     

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.