When it comes to fast bowling, Pakistan has had no dearth of talent. Over the years, the nation has introduced one fast bowling talent after the other to international cricket. While the nation has had a large no of fast bowlers, only a few have been able to perform at the highest level for a long time without getting into any controversy. One such player is the legendary, Wasim Akram.
Akram has over 900 wickets in International cricket to his name and finds himself in the list of top 10 bowlers of all time to play the sport. The left-arm-seamer also held the record for the most no. of wickets in ODI cricket before he was surpassed by Muttiah Muralitharan. Recently, while talking on a Youtube channel, the former Pakistan captain said that former Pakistan bowler Mohammad Asif had tremendous potential to be a big star of the game but he just wasted his talent.
“Everyone raves about Mohammad Asif. I mean talent wasted no doubt. Whoever I talk to…that kind of bowler I saw after a long time. Jis tareeke se control karta tha ball ko. He could swing both ways. It’s very unfortunate for him and of course for Pakistan too,” Akram said on a show titled “To Be Honest 3.0” on YouTube.
“I have not seen him for ages. It’s been 10 years since I came to Karachi, I go to Lahore very less,” Akram added.
Asif was touted to be the ‘next big thing’ in International cricket. The seamer had a remarkable ability to swing the ball both ways while bowling at a consistent line and length. One of the finest batsmen of the modern era Hashim Amla rated him to be the toughest bowler he ever had to face. His spell against Ricky Ponting is still fresh in the mind of many fans.
Asif could only play 23 Tests for Pakistan where he took 106 wickets. He also played 38 ODIs and picked up 46 wickets. However, Asif’s magnificent talent was wasted by his own deeds when he got involved in a spot-fixing scandal in a Test Match in England in 2010. That game turned out to be the last match Asif would ever play for his country.
When asked by the anchor, if he would admonish him for what he did, Akram replied: “I doubt it. Chota baccha hai, galti ho gayi thi.”