Player Profile

Sarfaraz Ahmed
Pakistan
Born May 22, 1987 ( 32 Yrs )
Birth Place Karachi, Sind
Height
Known As
Player Role WK-Batsman
Player Bat Style Right Handed Bat
Player Bowl Style

Career Information - Teams

Pakistan, Pakistan U19, Pakistan All Star XI, Quetta Gladiators, Yorkshire, Khulna Titans


ICC Rankings

TEST ODI T20
Batting
Bowling
All Rounder

Profile

The characteristics of a keeper batsman in the last 1980's and 90's - chirpy, safe pair of hands and handy with the bat. Sarfraz as a keeper is an embodiment of the glovesmen from the eras gone by. As a batsman though, he stays in the present. A busy bee at the crease, he loves to churn out runs at a fastish clip. For a country who have had a strong lineage of keepers in the form of Wasim Bari, Moin Khan, Rashid Latif and Umar Akmal. Sarfraz has so far carved a niche for himself. He is street smart and thrives under pressure situations.

No wonder he was handed over the reigns of the ODI side after Azhar Ali had a tumultuous time as a skipper post the retirement of Misbah Ul Haq. A committed and gutsy keeper batsman, Sarfraz is not new to the role of captaincy as he had led Pakistan under-19 team to triumph in the 2006 edition. Pakistan then became the first team to defend their title as their colts had won it in 2004 as well. In the finals of the 2006 championship, Pakistan were up against arch rivals India and managed to defend a petty 109 to win the cup. They skittled the Indians out for 71 to defend their title in the most pompous way possible.

Sarfraz's introduction to both ODI and Test cricket though was out of the blue. He was picked for the bilateral ODI series in India in 2007 and in Tests was flown to Australia during the 2009-10 tour for the last Test at Hobart. The one-off Test was followed by a tour to oblivion for almost the next 3 years. His place in the ODI side was also far from being secured till he rescued Pakistan with a valiant 46* against Bangladesh in the 2012 Asia Cup. Pakistan went on to win the game by a wafer thin margin of 2 runs. Those 46 runs gave a prism of hope to one nation and despair to the other as the Bangladeshis stuttered at the final hurdle.

After the selectors completed their musical chair of handing the keeping duties to the Akmal brothers( Adnan and Kamran), Sarfraz was brought back into the Test team for the tour to South Africa in 2013. There were visible struggles for him but he seemed to have gotten better as the tour progressed. The tides changed for good and the 2014-15 season turned out to be a fairytale one for Ahmed. He notched up an away ton against Lanka, and tons against Australia and New Zealand in consecutive Test series. Even away tours to England and Australia were not intimidating to the pint-sized entertainer, who wears his heart on his sleeves.

Initially ignored as a first choice keeper in favour of Umar Akmal for the first part of the 2015 World Cup, Sarfraz was promoted to open in a must win game against South Africa and he delivered with a gutsy run-a-ball 49. His exploits won him the Man of the Match award and he repeated the feat with his maiden century against Ireland in the very next game. That tilted the faith of the selectors in his favour and a year later he was handed the captaincy for the T20 format. His swashbuckling ways earning him plaudits more often than not has been strength and very rarely a reason for his downfall.

The numbers continue to grow in magnitude for Sarfraz and his keenness to win at any cost serves Pakistan good post Misbah's retirement in Tests. Sarfraz being a permanent member of the Test team will be a likely candidate to don the leadership role but Azhar Ali's candidature will also pose a bit of headache for the selectors. A flamboyant leader of men or a docile skipper who shields his emotions well. The ball is in the court of the selectors. A fruitful Champions Trophy will do his chances no bad.

In T20s, Sarfraz has also been potent and lead the Quetta Gladiators. His team have been finalists in both seasons - 2016 and 2017. Being the skipper of the national T20 team as well, Sarfraz's numbers are bound to swell up as he loves playing as a floater in the batting order.

World Cup through the years:

Sarfaraz Ahmed became a national icon in Pakistan after he led his team to a fairytale Champions Trophy victory against India in 2017. His next biggest challenge is the World Cup. If he can replicate Champions Trophy effort and win Pakistan the World Cup after 27 years then his stature in a cricket-frenzy nation will touch new heights, probably at par with Imran Khan. Sarfaraz started the last World Cup on the bench, not featuring in the first four out of six matches. But his fortune took a 360-degree turn from there and by the end of the World Cup, Sarfraz was the only Pakistan player to score a hundred in that tournament and he bagged a Man of the Match award too against South Africa. The challenges in the 2019 World Cup would be far greater for him and how he would maintain his persona under immense pressure situation would play a crucial role in the outcome of Pakistan's World Cup campaign.

by Kumar Abhisekh Das


Career

TEST debut vs Australia at Bellerive Oval, Jan 14, 2010
Last TEST vs South Africa at The Wanderers Stadium, Jan 11, 2019
ODI debut vs India at Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Nov 18, 2007
Last ODI vs Sri Lanka at National Stadium, Oct 02, 2019
T20 debut vs England at Dubai International Cricket Stadium , Feb 19, 2010
Last T20 vs Sri Lanka at Gaddafi Stadium, Oct 09, 2019

Batting Career Summary

M Inn NO Runs HS Avg BF SR 100 200 50 4s 6s
ODI 116 90 22 2302 105 33.85 2622 87.8 2 0 11 172 12
T20 58 41 12 812 89 28 641 126.68 0 0 3 79 15
Test 49 86 13 2657 112 36.4 3743 70.99 3 0 18 268 8
IPL 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Bowling Career Summary

M Inn B Runs Wkts BBI BBM Econ Avg SR 5W 10W
ODI 116 1 12 15 0 15/0 15/0 7.5 0 0 0 0
T20 58 0 0 0 0 -/- -/- 0 0 0 0 0
Test 49 0 0 0 0 -/- -/- 0 0 0 0 0
IPL 0 0 0 0 0 -/- -/- 0 0 0 0 0