Cricketers, follow Imran Farhat’s example and find the right father-in-law!

Published: August 9, 2013
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I would request for the entire nation to observe a moment of silence for Farhat’s return, just like it is silently watching “Ramazan Aman”. PHOTO: FILE/AFP

After having read the famous quote, “A man in love is incomplete until he is married. Then he’s finished”, I realised how untrue this was in case of Mr Imran Farhat. No one could finish him ever since he got married and once again, our superhero is back!

Imran Farhat has successfully made another comeback into the Pakistani cricket team. This time, I am comparing his return to that of Mr Aamir Liaquat’s epic comeback to his home TV channel. Both have certainly inscribed their marks among the masses, due to their common talent of making comebacks. Mr Liaquat relishes a ‘doctorate’ degree, whereas Mr Farhat is enjoying a certificate; the marriage certificate.

Since his “phenomenal” heroics at the Champions Trophy, that enabled Pakistan to take an early exit to enjoy a much-needed breather before important future tours, Farhat’s workload was realised by the PCB and they decided to give him ‘due rest’ for the West Indies series.

Against all odds, the master of comebacks has been selected for the Zimbabwe tour.

His recent domestic performance is in front of my eyes; I am stunned to see that he scored 16, 7, 14, 5, 5, 65 runs in his last six domestic matches. I must acknowledge that those 65 runs were enough to prove his capabilities and to bring him back to the team against an important opposition like Zimbabwe.

The only other reason that comes to mind is perhaps hidden in this quote,

“Before marriage, a man yearns for the woman he loves. After the marriage the “Y” becomes silent”.

Now, I would request for the entire nation to observe a moment of silence for Farhat’s return, just like it is silently watching “Ramazan Aman”.

You might all know that Nasir Jamshed has been dropped from the Test squad, but do you know why?

To date, he has no father-in-law in the PCB. In fact, he has no in-laws at all. Otherwise, a young and talented player like Jamshed, presented no other reasons to be dropped out. On the other hand, Farhat will go ahead and score some cheap runs, to (once again) ruin some important future series. But of course, he will still be called back. After all, who can keep “damad ji” out of action (and the news) for a longer period of time?

Jamshed, a little piece of advice, if you ever decide to marry just remember, “love is blind, and marriage is the eye-opener”. If you’re smart, you’ll realise what else marriage will open up for you in front of blind selectors!

Dear selectors: have you really selected Faisal Iqbal and Wahab Riaz too? Is there any criterion or merit for such decisions? Apart from Faisal Iqbal’s modest average of 26.76 in 26 Test matches, his last few domestic innings read 25, 22, 48, 4, 4, 42. He, aged 31, is not a youngster anymore either. How long will he get chances?

Two relatively younger batsmen, Umar Akmal and Fawad Alam, average 48.94 and 55.96 in domestic, respectively. If you won’t play them against Zimbabwe, then where and when will you try them? Similarly, Usman Salahuddin (averaging 47.21), Haris Sohail (averaging 51+) have been overlooked for Test team selection, for no apparent reason. If Imran Farhat can get 40 Test matches over a decade with a modest average of just 30, why can’t Fawad Alam after averaging 40+ in only three Test matches?

In the bowling department, PCB opted for Rahat Ali and Ehsan Adil, instead of consistent performers like Sadaf Hussain and Asad Ali. Asad couldn’t impress the selectors after his performance in the ODI series in the West Indies, but his First Class bowling statistics (averaging 22.87 for 355 wickets) are far better than the other two. He certainly deserved more opportunities.

There are some other notable omissions too. For instance, the young aspiring wicket keeper Mohammad Rizwan has also been dropped past the West Indies tour, without even being tried. He averages about 44.32 in the First Class and his snubbing is mind boggling. How can a cricketer prove himself without even being tried?

Similarly, Hammad Azam was dropped after only two chances, which is unfair to a young player like him. Pakistan desperately needs an all rounder and if Azam is not good enough, then Abdul Razzaq could have been reselected. The World T20 is around the corner and we need at least one good all rounder to compete against the international teams out there.

Finally, another old saying reads, “you have two choices in life: you can stay single and be miserable, or get married and wish you were dead”. However, contrary to this statement, I would advise our young aspiring cricketers to get married to the daughter of a PCB official and be certain that another comeback is always round the corner.

You cannot choose your uncles, but you can always choose your in-laws!

Faisal Nadeem

Faisal Nadeem

An electrical engineer with a PhD in Computer Engineering, Faisal Nadeem's interests include sports, art, literature, culture and religion.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • sikandar kapri

    Hahahaha man it was worth reading this…really appreciate ur sense of humourRecommend

  • liketovoicemyview

    As the saying goes: “If your father is a poor man, that is your luck. However if your father in law is a poor man, that is ur stupidity” ;)Recommend

  • Kashif

    PCB and our cricket team is perfect example of family run business.
    Well Done Chahcha Ilyas
    Well done his Damad JiRecommend

  • Adnan Khan

    Dear Nadeem,

    wonderful article, really superb, bits and pieces of wonderful humour and serious anger in this article. Appreciate

    AdnanRecommend

  • Pakistanian

    I am not entirely sure why there is no accountability of the selectors and why isnt the rationale for selection of players openly discussed ………………… well written on a different note ….. when we can have presidents and prime ministers, leaders of major parties, MNAs MPAs, SHOs, DSP, IGs, DIGs who are highest order criminals (obviously innocent till proven guilty by the very system they control), based on this argument, I am not entirely sure why we blame nepotism in the case of Imran Farhat! Recommend

  • Pakistanian

    on another note, why do we nhave Najam Sethi as the PCB chairman, its like blind leading the blind. like Inzi says, the selectors have played 2-3 international games in their lives, what will they understand about cricket …. Give it to Rameez, Wasim, Waqar , Inzi and see how they deal with all the issues at hand ….Recommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad

    Imran Farhat’s father in law is not a very powerful man nor he is in a position to dictate PCB. There are hundreds of ex cricketers like him who early in the morning go to Qaddafi stadium and other venues and wait there for free lunch and rides from current players. In my opinion, he has some secrets of PCB officials. There is an opportunity to investigate this matter on these lines.Recommend

  • safdar

    excellent piece of writing.

    you r very true mate,Recommend

  • http://www.twitter.com/sxahir Zahir

    Thanks for the advice Faisal, a great article for a bachelor like me. Now I will wisely “select” my wife ;)Recommend

  • Razi

    he got selected so that he can be a match winner and then remain in the team……then he fails in some other series………but I hope he fails miserably in Zimbabwe….Recommend

  • Khan sahib

    lol. Power of father in law. Good one.Recommend

  • http://www.twitter.com/sxahir Zahir

    I like Imran Farhat, not for his shot selections but for his wife/father in law selection ….Imran has timed that well ! Recommend

  • Bilal

    This story is true for every field of life not only cricket.Recommend

  • http://pak usman

    Don’t be jealous about Farhat’s master stroke which only few can play as good as Imran Farhat……. Great articleRecommend

  • crickitwee

    Someone please in Lahore or Pakistan pelt a few rotten eggs at selector Ilyas. That man is causing needless damage to Pakistan’s opening slot! Also how on earth can one justify Faisal Iqbal when you have talented youngsters like Haris Sohail , Umar Akmal, Fawad Alam and Umar Amin on the sides. Miandad needs to stop interfering too.Recommend

  • Aamir

    Great piece of writing. When are we ever going to get rid of Parchi Farhat. Even a cat only has 9 lives…Recommend

  • S

    hahahah well done! brilliant humour Recommend

  • Hafeez

    Lolz..very nice article.although but Amir Liaqut comebacks are not due to his father-in-law, he has his own set of talents..;)Recommend

  • Omar

    Well what I do not understand is that why is everyone writing against Faisal Iqbal? Just because the guy has been dealt a hard hand by the selectors everytime he scored? Considering that everyone is criticizing his selections, I believe that M. Hafeez should also be left out of the squad!!! What Faisal has an average of 26.76 whereas Hafeez has an average of 35.12! wow! In ODI’s Faisal has an average of 23 whereas Hafeez has an average of 27 and yet he is made the captain of Pakistan ODI team and everyone appreciates that.. so we really are a nation full of vested interest.. Yes, I believe the writer has some sort of a personal vendetta in criticizing Faisal or maybe just because the writer has no cricketing experience at the top level he is writing such stuff.

    Or maybe it is a fact that Faisal has been around for ages and is aged 31, so what, Hafeez is 32, drop him also. Furthermore, my question is why have the selectors not bothered to actually play Faisal in tests. I’m afraid the answer to that is that they are scared of the fact that he is hungry and probably the only player on the current cricketing scene of Pakistan who plays technically correct cricket instead of the slam, bam, thank you ma’am stuff players like Hafeez, Umer Akmal, Kamran Akmal and the lot are used to.

    On a pure cricketing basis, I do believe that Nasir Jamshed and Hammad Azam have been given a raw deal but with the middle order should read the names of Younis Khan, Misbah, Asad Shafiq and Faisal Iqbal. This will not only give us a solid batting line up but also a chance to actually survive the full 5 days even against a team like Zimbabwe. Recommend

  • Umer Rasheed

    ExactlyRecommend

  • http://NA the Skunk

    Not only the PCB but Pakistan is a dynastic existence with a national flag and anthem. SalamsRecommend

  • http://NewDelhi Kanya Kumari

    @Omar:
    You are either Faisal Iqbal yourself, or his personal manager. lol.
    You want to compare Faisal Iqbal with Hafeez?
    Hafeez can also bowl and he was ranked number one bowler recently. Secondly, if Hafeez does not perform, selectors should drop him. but in no way, a poor performance by another player, justifies the selection of Faisal Iqbal. 26+ average after 26 matches, is enough proof that Iqbal is not made for the highest level.Recommend

  • Talha Leghari

    @Omar: I second your comment! Faisal Iqbal should be given a chance, he is far better than the current lot representing Pakistan. It’s high time now to remove/replace Sargodha lobby from Pakistan Team. Hafeez and Misbah should be sent back to school so that they should learn how to rotate the strike! Can anyone from PCB or media can share the test and ODI stats of current players representing Pakistan and the number of matches they have played. Though this is available online but this is needed here to show the actual potential of Pakistani players, i bet if you add centuries scored by current players with that of Ian Bell, Alistair Cook, Virat Kohli, Pakistani players cannot match the number of centuries the above stated players have scored!

    Why are the Akmal brothers selected every time?dont we have players? or do they have a big source? or Pakistan Cricket team belongs to their father? answer is required.

    I believe Faisal Iqbal is the only technically correct player currently playing cricket in Pakistan and as a result of his gifted technique, he is sitting outside!
    Let us pray that Faisal gets a chance in the playing eleven so that he can prove his mantle likewise he proved it against India with a rock solid century.

    Cheers
    Talha Leghari
    Follower and a Cricket player.Recommend

  • http://Karachi Tariq

    @Omar:
    PCB should drop Azhar Ali and put in your favourite faisal iqbal in middle order !!!! you got to be kidding.Recommend

  • Omar

    Everyone who is disagreeing to my post on Faisal being given a chance must realize that players like Misbah, Shoaib Malik and Hafeez have always connived against him. He was bought in at the ripe age of 16/17, then was dropped in favor of Inzi and Yousuf (fair enough). However, PCB and selectors have spent 10 years in grooming this kid for the future of Pakistan cricket, even touting him as a future captain by giving him the captaincy of several junior level teams, then how come when its his time ‘parchi players’ are preferred over him. Players who are morons and do not realize that the beauty of batting lies in occupying the wicket and playing as much as possible but instead go out to slog and get out. How many of these guys can actually challenge him for his technique and play with a straight bat? I agree with Talha that Faisal is one of the most technically correct batsmen around. Also, give him a chance and if he fails again then tell him that its the end of your career, thank you for everything and you will not play for Pakistan again. its unfair to keep him in the squad but not give him a chance.

    Furthermore, how many of the current lot have the guts to dance down the wicket and hit Shane Warne for 6’s? And for those who say he is not good enough, I believe your cricketing sense and experience is greater than those of Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Rahul Dravid, etc if not then keep mum and let him have his chance. Or is Misbah scared that with one chance, Faisal can change it all around and give a tough time to the Sailkot / Faisalabad players? Make it an even playing field mate!Recommend

  • Omar

    Kanya Kumar, well what are you scared of comparing Faisal with Hafeez? The point is that Hafeez plays as a batsman and not a bowler, hence his being ranked as the number 1 bowler is no grounds for him continuing in the team! Either start playing him as a bowler and bring in a batsman or drop him since he hasnt performed as a batsman. Recommend

  • http://NewDelhi Kanya Kumari

    @Talha Leghari:
    Faisal Iqbal is the only technically correct player currently playing cricket … in the whole world. No?Recommend

  • Talha Leghari

    @Kanya Kumari: Kindly read my post again which says ”Faisal is the only technically correct batsman currently playing cricket in Pakistan! Why is he not being given second chance unlike Misbah, Hafeez, Akmal brothers, Shoaib Malik and Imran Farhat? Recommend

  • Omar

    Kanya Kumar, no sir there are others much more technically correct but not in the Pakistani circuit. Unfortunately, here everyone wants to be Afridi, who is a natural and not a wanna be! The fact remains, that with Faisal in the playing 11 team Pakistan has a chance of playing full 5 day tests and not the usual 2 to 3 day affairs we have had against better teams than Zimbabwe,

    Please we are talking about Team Pakistan and no-ones favorites. Call a wrong a wrong and its jihad! So for the love of cricket, let’s be fair!Recommend

  • http://NewDelhi Kanya Kumari

    @Omar:
    Even Hafeez the batsman is better then Faisal Iqbal. Compare their total runs and averages. lol. plus he can also bowl ten overs.Recommend

  • http://NewDelhi Kanya Kumari

    He didn’t get a second chance, because he didn’t deserve a second chance. Imran Farhat got more chances but he didn’t deserve them either. simple.Recommend

  • http://NewDelhi Kanya Kumari

    @Talha Leghari:
    Faisal is the only technically correct batsman currently playing cricket in Pakistan!
    This is a big claim, Mr. Leghari. Pak cricket is finished if Faisal Iqbal remains the only technically correct player. Bye.Recommend

  • Omar

    @Kanya Kumari:

    Well the truth behold that indeed Pakistan cricket is at the verge of being finished!
    Look at the quality of cricketers being produced today. Go back 2 decades and you had greats like Imran Khan, Miandad, Salim Malik, Abdul Qadir, Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Aqib Javed, Mushtaq Ahmed, Rashid Latif, Moin Khan, Inzi, M. Yousuf, Saeed Anwar, Aamir Sohail, Shoaib Akhter, etc playing and actually looked forward to watching any Pakistan game. Today, there are hardly any cricketer’s holding potential to be of that calibre only because everyone wants to be a show stopper. No one wants to hold the fort and play into an innings. Once again, I believe that you criticism of Faisal is uncalled for since everytime he has been called upon, he has performed. Yes, he has been around for the last 10 odd years and yes he has an average of 26 only but he has been dropped more often than Shahid Afridi has retired!!! Even when the guy scores a 100, he is made to either bat at a different number or worst dropped from the team. One understood the logic of that when players like Inzi or younis were making a return however, now that he is senior enough to actually play his part, he is being made to sit out. Look at England where a player doesnt get a chance till he hits his 30s and here we are calling Faisal old because the set up wanted to groom him for the future and now that his turn is their he is not being played due to the fact that Misbah and Hafeez are afraid that he will perform and one of their minions will be made to sit out due to his performance. As I said, give him a chance, if he doesnt perform, tell him that you will no longer be considered for selection and then let him sit out but this is an unjust way of destroying a very promising cricketer not only for himself but also for a team full of goofs! Recommend

  • faraz

    friends, if a player like imran farhat and taufeeq umar can have many chances so let us try faisal iqbal! imran farhat seems not to be out of the time until he retires. probably faisal iqbal can be better than azhar ali and taufeeq umar who play very slow. in fact it is not even suitable to test cricket these days they play very slow with the strike rate of 30 something which can lead towards draw.Recommend

  • faraz

    as we know faisal iqbal will hardly get a chance. anyway if he will not perform he will be dropped straight away for sure he wont be having chances for forever like imran farhat. as simple as that. let it be. Recommend