Pakistan lost one of its true legends in leg-spinner Abdul Qadir, who bid goodbye to this world on September 6 due to a massive cardiac arrest in Lahore, Pakistan. He was 63 years old and was nine days short of his 64th birthday which falls on September 15. He is credited with saving the dying skill of leg-spin in the 80s with his flamboyance and amazing ability with the ball.
The decade of the 70s and 80s saw the teams focusing mainly on fast bowlers thanks to the Lillies and Thompsons of Australia and the four-prong pace attack of the West Indies, leading to not many bowlers taking up leg-spin. But Qadir’s success with wrist spin led to the likes of Mushtaq Ahmed and Shane Warne contacting him for guidance and mentorship.
Khan says that Qadir would have gotten more wickets if modern DRS was available
Qadir picked 236 Test wickets and 132 ODI wickets in his career of 67 Tests and 104 ODI matches from 1977-1993. The leggie from Lahore enjoyed much patronship from Pakistan’s majestic captain Imran Khan throughout his career, which gave him the confidence to take on the best batsmen in any condition. His best bowling of 9/56 came against England in Faisalabad in 1986, while he picked 6/16 against the West Indies, the mightiest team of his time, bowling them out for 53 runs.
Imran Khan played a big role in shaping Qadir’s career, by keeping faith in him throughout the career. It all came crashing down when Imran was convinced by Javed Miandad to drop an underperforming Qadir for the famous Bangalore Test against India in 1987 which was ultimately won by two Pakistani spinners in Iqbal Qasim and Tauseef Ahmed on a turning pitch. His last Test came in 1990 against West Indies, while he played his final ODI against Sri Lanka in 1993.
Imran Khan took to Twitter to call Qadir a legend of the game and also mentioned the fact that if there was modern DRS system available during his time, he would have picked a lot more wickets than his 236. He claimed that Qadir would have picked close to 700 wickets, same as Warne because, during the late leggie’s time, LBW calls off the front foot were ruled not out.
Khan tweeted, “Qadir’s bowling statistics do not do justice to his genius. Had he been playing cricket now with the modern DRS system, where batsmen can be given out on the front foot as well, Qadir would have gotten as many wickets as the great Shane Warne.”
Qadir's bowling statistics do not do justice to his genius. Had he been playing cricket now with the modern DRS system, where batsmen can be given out on the front foot as well, Qadir would have gotten as many wickets as the great Shane Warne.
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) September 7, 2019
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