Cricket Classics

Pakistan’s birth as Test playing nation

Thursday, October 16, 2021
Gaurav Saxena
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Known as the 'Little Master' of Pakistan, Hanif Mohammad was the greatest of a long line of Mohammad brothers who represented Pakistan at international stage.

Hanif, who was the member of Pakistan team that played its first ever Test match against India on October 16 exactly 56 years ago at Delhi, went on to become one of the finest batsman in Pakistan cricket history. In an exclusive interview with cricketnirvana.com, the legendary batsman relived his Test debut and Pakistan’s birth in international cricket.

Excerpts

Turning Point
We got noticed when we defeated the MCC in 1951 and our victory got us the affiliation and later introduced us to international cricket.

Pak’s birth as Test playing nation
On our first international tour we crossed the border to play a Test series in India. We played our first Test match (scorecard) in Delhi. India had a start studded and a very experienced side. I was very excited to play against the likes of Lala Amarnath, Mankad, Harzare and Umrigar. I scored 51 in the first innings and it was a great moment for me. Although we went on to lose the Test match but the memories are still fresh in my mind.

First Test win
After losing the Delhi Test, we travelled to Lucknow to play the second match (scorecard). We dismissed the Indian team cheaply and then I and Nazar Mohammad gave Pakistan a good start. I scored some 34 runs but Nazar went on to score a wonderful century. Fazal Mahmood took seven wickets and seized victory for us in our very second international match.

On the impact of India-Pakistan partition on cricket
It had a huge impact on the development of the game. In our times there was first class cricket in Pakistan. We were a young nation. During our tour of India, we tried to improve by each match. I would say that the tour of India really helped us get international exposure.

On Pakistan’s rise
We travelled to England and went on to beat them at The Oval (scorecard). The win was the defining moment of our arrival in the international arena.

On Indo-Pak rivalry in cricket
India- Pakistan rivalry is unmatched. All the talks about the rivalry being overshadowed by India- Australia are incorrect.
 


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