|Posted by anccricket on October 24, 2008 at 2:05 AM|
Full name Taufeeq Umar
Born June 20, 1981, Lahore, Punjab
Major teams Pakistan, Habib Bank Limited, ICL Pakistan XI, Lahore, Lahore Badshahs, Mumbai Champs, Pakistan Reserves
Batting style Left-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm offbreak
Relation Uncle - Pervez Akhtar
A left-hand opener from Lahore, Taufeeq Umar first made his mark in the Lombard World Under-15 Challenge in England in 1996. He made 87 against England in the semi-final, and in the final, which Pakistan lost to India, he opened with Hasan Raza, who was to play Test cricket shortly afterwards. A front-foot player who drives well, Taufeeq is nonetheless a good cutter. He can also bowl some handy offspin. Taufeeq could not have asked for an easier initiation into international cricket - he played his first Test against Bangladesh, and duly notched up a hundred to become the eighth player to score a century on Test debut for Pakistan. But far more impressive were his subsequent performances - an 88 against a top-class Australian attack was followed by a flawless 135 against South Africa at Cape Town. On those bouncy pitches, Taufeeq had ample time to play the seamers. He did not get much opportunity in the World Cup, but showed himself to be an absolute asset in Pakistan's home series against South Africa, scoring a hundred and three fifties in four innings.
Yet, as a result of Pakistan's lack of patience with their openers, he was axed a few Tests later after a string of moderate performances. Since then he has been in and out - more out - of the team. When he has been given a chance since, he has looked understandably nervous but given that no opener in Pakistan has been allowed to settle into the side, the door remains ajar.