Fakhar Zaman, hailing from Mardan, a place where the cricketing skills of Younis Khan, one of Pakistan’s greatest Test batsmen, set the benchmark, has spent over five years in Pakistan’s domestic cricket circuit without much recognition. As a left-handed opener with a unique high backlift, Zaman relies on his timing to score runs, and he has been quite successful in doing so. His impressive averages in domestic cricket (42 in first-class cricket and 49 in List A) reflect his consistency.
However, it was during the Quaid-e-Azam trophy in the 2016-17 season that Zaman’s performances started gaining attention. He amassed 663 runs in the competition, averaging 51. Notably, he scored a remarkable 170 runs in the second innings of the final, a match largely dominated by former Pakistan captain Salman Butt’s twin centuries.
His outstanding form earned him a contract with the Lahore Qalandars in the Pakistan Super League (PSL). Zaman showcased glimpses of his domestic brilliance during a rapid 33-ball 56 against Karachi, where he dismantled the opposition bowling attack with elegance. This noteworthy performance led to his selection in Pakistan’s T20I squad for the West Indies tour, and he made his debut in the second match in Port of Spain.
Although Zaman had a slow start in his first three T20Is, scoring only 26 runs, his talent remained relatively unknown to the world. However, a couple of months later, during the 2017 Champions Trophy in England, he made his ODI debut. After missing the opening match against India, Zaman turned the tide for Pakistan with scores of 31, 50, 57, and a remarkable 114 in his first four ODI innings.
His strike rate of 113.00 provided much-needed impetus to Pakistan’s batting lineup at the top order, which was accustomed to a slower pace. His century in the final earned him the Player-of-the-Match award and helped set a formidable total of 338, which proved to be insurmountable for India.
No doubt, he is an exceptional player and he is going to play as B-Love Kandy team in the coming LPLT20 starting from 31st July.