Asad Shafiq dedicates century to Pakistan legend Hanif Mohammad342 views
Pakistan batsman Asad Shafiq, who scored his ninth Test hundred on day two against England in the final Test at The Oval, dedicated his century to legendary Pakistan batsman Hanif Mohammad, who passed away on Thursday.
The legendary Pakistan batsman passed away at the age of 81 in Karachi after battling with poor health for a prolonged period. He was Pakistan’s first star and his 970-minute 337 against West Indies in 1958 is still the longest Test innings in history and earned him the moniker ‘Little Master’.
At The Oval pavilion on Friday, the flags flew at half-mast as a tribute to the legend, who once described Shafiq’s technique as the closest to his.
Speaking after scoring his first century of the series, Shafiq said: “I would definitely like to dedicate the hundred to great Hanif Mohammad. He was a great batsman in our history and it is an honour to dedicate this hundred to him.”
When asked about the comparison Hanif made about his style, he said, “It is a great honour for me to know this and will be a great source of encouragement to do better and better. He was a great batsman, and I am not at all close to him, but if he had said that then I am honoured.”
Although Shafiq did not have a great series until the final Test, his promotion to No.4 worked wonders as he scored just his second Test century outside Asia. His only other century outside Asia was against South Africa in Cape Town three years ago.
“Yes, it’s great to score a hundred outside Asia. When I was coming on this tour everyone was saying that that it will be tough so it’s great to score a hundred here,” he said, speaking after helping Pakistan to a strong position. “Test cricket is always challenging and we have to be up for that challenge. I will be the happiest man if we win after my hundred.”
Farbrace rues missed chances
Pakistan ended the day with a lead of 12 runs and Younis Khan batting on 101, after scoring his 32nd Test century. Although they have four wickets in hands and have a good chance of levelling the series at 2-2, it would have been much worse if England had held onto their catches.
Centurion Shafiq was one of three Pakistan batsmen who were dropped before lunch on day two and England’s assistant coach Paul Farbrace admitted that was a concern. He said: “Missed chances have been an issue for us. If we’re serious about being No. 1 in the world, we have to catch our catches.”
“Until the last half-hour, it was a tough day,” said Farbrace, but the hosts picked up three late wickets including that of captain Misbah-ul-Haq. “Those last two wickets have given us a bit of encouragement. Days two and three are generally the best times to bat and Pakistan, by bowling us out, have earned the right. They’ve batted well but we’ve battled back well.”
News Source Sportsskeeda