Pakistan great Javed Miandad turned 60 on Monday, June 12 and is considered one of the best batsmen Pakistan ever produced. In a career that saw 16, 213 runs and 31 centuries, Miandad goes right up there in terms of the legends of the game. In fact, he was ranked 44th in list of best cricketers of all time while standing head and shoulders in terms of Pakistan players. Besides being a potent batsman, he also led Pakistan as a skipper while coaching the side after retiring from the game followed by holding a position in the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) as well. Miandad is one of the few to have coached the Pakistan side thrice on separate occasions.
The former great has seen some interesting and standout moments during his career that began with his first Test series against New Zealand in 1976. Abdul Hafeez Kardar, Pakistan’s first Test captain and later an administrator, called Miandad “the find of the decade” early on his career. Only recently-retired Younis Khan has scored more runs for Pakistan than Miandad with Inzamam-Ul-Haq coming in third. Miandad stands behind Inzamam and Younis in 50-plus scores.When y
When one looks at the iconic moments during his career, the last-ball six to Chetan Sharma in 1986 stands out for its historic nature and the drama that was yet to be associated with the limited over game. Going into the last ball, Pakistan had one wicket in hand and needed a boundary to beat India. After a long, long survey of the field and the placement, he converted an attempted yorker into a low full to send the ball soaring over midwicket. His celebrations, too, are etched in memory of many as Miandad raised his arms and sprinted away despite the ball yet to clear the rope. This one single shot is attributed to be the instigator for Pakistan building a run of success over India at the time.
“My last-ball six in the final of the Australasia Cup in Sharjah in 1986 to beat India, changed the game in a way. Teams, officials, players and, most importantly fans, all started to believe in the format and its’ potential. Now players would fight till the very last ball was bowled knowing they could triumph at the very last instant. Fans knew likewise, that every game was alive until the last ball was bowled,” Miandad said in 2015.
Javed Miandad mocks Kiran More
Not one to shy away from confrontation – especially when it involves an India-Pakistan game, another gem involving Miandad came in the 1992 World Cup. It was the first time the two continental rivals met in a World Cup and this was arguably the most iconic moment from that contest.
The incident came in Pakistan’s chase of 217 runs and with things not going smoothly, things were getting heated in the middle and Miandad a bit agitated. At half way stage, Pakistan had only mustered 85/2. As things progressed, Sachin Tendulkar sent one down the leg side and Miandad tried to play it along but it went safely through to More behind the stumps. In an extravagant appeal for a relatively simple delivery, More appealed long and loud while going up-and-down in sheer animated fashion. The umpire, rightly, waved it not outside but Miandad was not pleased with the instense appeal.
The two then exchanged words with neither backing down and Miandad complained to umpire David Shephard. More didn’t hold back still and made his exasperation with the Pakistan pro known in response. Things heated up further when More removed the bails in an attempted run out despite Miandad well inside the crease. This was the breaking point – so to speak.
With his bat clutched in between his two hands, Miandad sprang up and down while bringing his knees up to his chest. All this to mimic More’s enthusiastic appealing method while still looking silly at the dawn of cricket broadcast across the globe. Maybe not the best advertisement of the gentleman’s game but one iconic moment in Miandad’s career.
Javed Miandad – the hothead
It is by no clear that Miandad is not one to back down and take things standing down from the opposition. Another instance of his no holds barred attitude came against Denis Lillee in the 1981/82 series in Australia. This was Miandad’s first tour as Pakistan skipper and in the first Test in Perth, both legends of the game tarnished their image to a great deal in a petty incident. In the incident, Lillee moved in front of Miandad as the Pakistan batsman completed a run and blocked his path. Both players offer different accounts in their autobiographies. If the collision wasn’t enough, Lillee turned back while maintaining that Miandad struck him from behind with his bat; Miandad was kicked by Lillee as he passed. As things unravelled, Lillee tried to confront Miandad once again and the Pakistan skipper lifted his bat above his head as if to strike him. Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack refers to this incident as “one of the most undignified incidents in Test history”.