HomeSportsWahab Riaz, leading bowler of Pakistan, retires at 38

Wahab Riaz, leading bowler of Pakistan, retires at 38

Pakistani cricketer Wahab Riaz has hung up his boots finally at the age of 38. He enjoyed a glittering career that intimidated the best of batsmen and was comparatively left untouched by scandal as compared to some of his compatriots. He is fondly remembered for the mesmeric bowling he did against Shane Watson, who had a reputation for staying long on the pitch and would have remained so had it not been for this lanky, 6 foot 1 inch pacer who always had a big friendly grin on his face, although in whiteball cricket he enjoyed a formidable, even dangerous reputation that completely belied his soft exterior.

Although he enjoyed such a reputation in classic white ball cricket, he was on unsure footing in Test Cricket, which often is a hard nut to crack for many cricketers, for the stakes are exceptionally high and can make or break careers. In ODI, the new media circus of today’s cricket, he played in 91 of them and took 120 scalps( cricketing parlance for wickets), an admirable rate for any player, something he duplicated in 36 T20s and the resultant 34 scalps, which have often been described as the saving graces of his long, illustrious career. 

Although to be completely fair, he is 38 years old and is well past his prime with even science backing up the fact that male athletes peak in their early 30s, so judging by the evidence, he still has managed to show great sang froid and physical composure, like an elder statesman.

It is reflected in him being the leading wicket taker of his country, the by-product of their Qaid e-Azam, Muhammad Ali Jinnah. For a bowler, his average was 22.68, an economy of 7.79, something that can be written easily but is hard to maintain in reality, with so many eyes watching.

Here’s to his next innings( pun intended).

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