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Anwar Ali shines in English county on debut

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Anwar Ali shines in English county on debut

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Anwar Ali raises his bat. — Twitter/@Gloscricket
Anwar Ali raises his bat. — Twitter/@Gloscricket

KARACHI: Pakistan’s long-forgotten all-rounder Anwar Ali made a remarkable debut in the English county List-A season with a half-century for Gloucestershire.

Anwar, coming in to bat at number nine, scored 61 off 56 deliveries. His innings included two shots over the fence and three strokes to the boundary.

He also added 104 for the 8th wicket with Graeme van Buuren to help Gloucestershire post 278 against Northamptonshire at Cheltenham on Friday.

This is Anwar’s first-ever outing for any county team in England in any format of the game.

The 35-year-old all-rounder, who was once dubbed as the finest all-rounder in the country, has represented Pakistan in 22 ODI and 16 T20Is. He last played for the country in 2016.

In 2021, Anwar had announced his retirement from first-class cricket to fully focus on white-ball cricket.

The cricketer told Geo News that he made up his mind following the third round of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy and conveyed this to the team management.

“I think the time has come to vacate the place for some youngster to excel in first-class cricket. There are many knocking the doors for an opportunity in Sindh’s first XI side. I believe it is important to give them an opportunity,” Anwar said.

He refuted reports that the decision was due to a clash with Abu Dhabi T10 Leagues.

“My retirement has nothing to do with my contracts with leagues. This is not the first time, I’ve been playing both — leagues and domestic cricket, there was no change in my mindset regarding that. I was thinking about it for the last few days,” he said.

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