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The Magician Retires

With so many memories, countless winning contributions, some disappointments and a heavy heart, Saeed Ajmal have officially bid adieu to the cricket. It was an absolute joy to watch him in the era, he used to boss around the best batsmen of his time. Whether an arm ball, doosra or teesra, whenever he touched the magic ball, none could stay before his amazing bowling strategies. Though his ending note of career was not as promising as it should be but still, he will be remembered as one of the top bowlers in the world.

Off Spinner’s farewell match was between Faisalabad and Lahore in the on-going National T20 Cup. Unfortunately, his co-players couldn’t let him a fairy-tale ending of his career and lost the semi-final against Lahore Whites. He had announced his retirement from all three formats of crickets a few weeks ago and had cleared that at the end of this tournament he will leave the cricket permanently.

In his farewell speech, he insisted the Pakistani fans to upturn for the domestic games as players love to play when they have countrymen crowd supporting them. He is optimistic about international cricket in Pakistan that it will be played more regularly and the supporters should show their support. He also expressed gratitude to the crowd that turned up to watch his goodbye match.

Players of both the teams paid a guard of honor as the legendary bowler walked away from the ground for one last time. He was seen emotional after receiving such gesture and thanked the players and crowd by waving his hand to the ground. Ajmal was a bit economical throughout the competition, grabbed 8 wickets in 8 matches and was managed to bowl out 1 off 13 in 4 overs in his last match.

 

Ajmal as known as Jadugar for his bowling magic was one of the best bowlers Pakistan had ever made and ruled the batsmen all over the world when he was at the greatest of his career. He won us countless crucial matches and remained the undisputed king of all three formats for years. But, the juggernaut clogged when he was disqualified two times by International Cricket Council for illegal bowling action. Though he put up a fight and returned to the International crease with a modified delivery, the last couple of years haven’t done justice to his greatness.

Saeed Ajmal has a total of 447 wickets in international cricket. He took 178 wickets in his 35 Tests, 184 in ODIs and 85 wickets in T20Is. Ajmal is also the third-joint top wicket-taker in T20Is with Umar Gul. The off-spinner is also the 7th highest wicket-taker in T20s with 270 wickets.

Islamabad United and ESPN Cricinfo paid a little tribute to the superstar,

 

"I always enjoyed the challenge of international cricket and it would have been ideal to retire with a match for Pakistan”, Saeed Ajmal during the press conference, “PCB helped me in my career, but I am sorry to say that they did not fight my case well with the ICC when they suspended me”, he criticised PCB.

Ajmal added that he had accomplished level two coaching and would remain connected with the beloved sport by coaching youths. In the end, he emotionally expressed thanks to his club, parents, siblings and his wife for supporting him in all hard times.

Saeed Ajmal isn’t the first player that ended his cricket in such a way.  Shoaib Akhtar dropped in the last match. Abdul Razzaq came back, dropped and then never came back. Misbah-Younis walked off in vacant stadium 13500km away from the homeland. PCB considered a late farewell match for Shahid Afridi & now Saeed Ajmal walked off from the field last unofficially in a domestic match.

Overall, we wasted the opportunity to honor legends that made us what we are today and what we have achieved in the cricketing history.

Nazish Islam - a media graduate with an undying love for chai, books, traveling, series shows, sports, hijab, and of course writing.

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The Magician Retires

With so many memories, countless winning contributions, some disappointments and a heavy heart, Saeed Ajmal have officially bid adieu to the cricket. It was an absolute joy to watch him in the era, he...