Pakistan news May 29, 2012

Tahir trains with Qadir in Lahore

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Abdul Qadir, the former Pakistan legspinner, has said he rues the fact that the Lahore-born Imran Tahir went on to play for South Africa and not Pakistan. Tahir had met Qadir in Lahore on Tuesday, and will remain in Pakistan for the rest of the week, for personalised training sessions in preparation for South Africa's tour of England in July.

The pair had worked on increasing the variations in Tahir's bowling. "He is here to enhance his variations, and sought my guidelines regarding the finger googly and using flight as a weapon," Qadir told ESPNcricinfo. "He is very keen to learn more and I love to help him, because he applies what I teach him. I have only shared the googly information with him and Shahid Afridi."

Qadir is confident of Tahir making an impression in England. "England [have always] struggled against spin bowling a lot, but once it comes to their home conditions, they are good. I have shared my past experiences with Tahir, told him how to counter English batsman in their own conditions … I am optimistic that he will make an impact with his improved bowling."

Tahir, who has played seven Tests for South Africa, played cricket in Pakistan from 1996 to 2006. "My relations with Imran aren't something new," Qadir said. "I've know this boy since he was playing in the Under-19 team here; he had tremendous talent and I was urging the [Pakistan] board to try him. I still regret not having this boy in Pakistan colours, but I am proud of him."

Tahir was once part of the Pakistan A team and was one of the popular legspinners on the Pakistani domestic circuit in 90s. He was team-mates with Shoaib Malik and Abdul Razzaq in 1996, in the Under-19 squad that played against England and Australia.

"He has played an ample amount of cricket in Pakistan, it's unfortunate that we couldn't have him playing for Pakistan," Qadir said. "He was so hardworking and a good learner, and always wanted to play cricket on the big stage. He eventually got there, where he always wanted to get.

"This is not the first time he has come up to me for tips, he was consistently in touch with me and always visits me when he is here in Lahore."

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • wrenx on May 31, 2012, 9:14 GMT

    @landl47 And let's not forget, there's a reason England didn't prepare adequately for the tour - they felt they didn't need to. A lot of the test side were lounging around doing nothing for a long, long time after the less-than-strenuous India series. Had they taken the opposition more seriously, there would have been no problem organising better preparation for them - it's not hard to put together first-class practice matches if you're England. The standard line before the series was that it would be a walk in the park (check Zaltzman's column for a decent summary on this mindset), anything less than a 3-0 whitewash would be a disappointment. At least there was a whitewash, so that part didn't disappoint.

  • wrenx on May 31, 2012, 1:21 GMT

    @landl47 Alright, England lost because they were under-prepared. Now explain their subsequent loss to a weaker Sri Lankan side. And no need to compare apples and oranges in the shorter formats, vastly different teams competed in those, and Pakistan have done themselves no favours in ODIs over the last 2 years with outdated tactics and poor selection. And let's not pretend we're making anything up here, the word "ordinary" was thrown around everywhere by fans and professional English commentators alike when they were playing in the UAE. The results speak for themselves.

  • landl47 on May 30, 2012, 21:28 GMT

    @jimmy2s: You're quite wrong. Both England's players and supporters are respectful of other countries' teams. England lost the test series in UAE because their batsmen hadn't played any first-class cricket for 3 months and were under-prepared. So well were the lessons learned that England won 6 out of the 7 shorter-format games that followed the test series. England might lose to SA (I have great respect for the quality of the SA seam attack and their 4 world-class batsmen), but even if they do I'll promise you two things: SA won't win with ease and they won't win because of Tahir.

  • Indianpunjabi on May 30, 2012, 20:35 GMT

    Hahaha Anil Kumble was the Best Spinner among india and pakistan...check his stats and compare haha

  • BowledYa on May 30, 2012, 16:40 GMT

    It is incorrect to say that Pakistani players do not go to the legends to learn. They all have. Imran Khan, Wasim, Waqar, Abdul Qadir - all have taught (even if informally) the next generation of Pak cricketers. That's what makes the Pakistani team competitive all the time.

  • AJ_Tiger86 on May 30, 2012, 15:39 GMT

    Imran Tahir is extremely overrated and ordinary spinner. Paul Harris would have been a better option of the Saffers.

  • Siddie on May 30, 2012, 14:52 GMT

    imran tahir is a great bowler in the making..i hope he does very well for south africa but not when he is playing against pakiatan...LOL

  • AllroundCricketFan on May 30, 2012, 12:27 GMT

    Good luck to Tahir. He is a great servant to this sport - and has made South Africa his home. Loved by Saffas and Pakistanis(I think)

  • WickyRoy.paklover on May 30, 2012, 11:07 GMT

    @landl47,u seem to have zero knowledge of leg spin as u tryng to defy king of leg spin 4 obvious reasns as it was usd to be one man show in late 80's when qadir bowld at poms,i hope u remembr 54/9 against ur team,learn to admire d legnds which r nt 4rm ur team,even warne usd to learn 4rm qadir,imran would also prove a handful against ur team

  • Noball_Specialist on May 30, 2012, 10:55 GMT

    View his First Class record. Know that he worked very very hard for his plaudits.

  • wrenx on May 31, 2012, 9:14 GMT

    @landl47 And let's not forget, there's a reason England didn't prepare adequately for the tour - they felt they didn't need to. A lot of the test side were lounging around doing nothing for a long, long time after the less-than-strenuous India series. Had they taken the opposition more seriously, there would have been no problem organising better preparation for them - it's not hard to put together first-class practice matches if you're England. The standard line before the series was that it would be a walk in the park (check Zaltzman's column for a decent summary on this mindset), anything less than a 3-0 whitewash would be a disappointment. At least there was a whitewash, so that part didn't disappoint.

  • wrenx on May 31, 2012, 1:21 GMT

    @landl47 Alright, England lost because they were under-prepared. Now explain their subsequent loss to a weaker Sri Lankan side. And no need to compare apples and oranges in the shorter formats, vastly different teams competed in those, and Pakistan have done themselves no favours in ODIs over the last 2 years with outdated tactics and poor selection. And let's not pretend we're making anything up here, the word "ordinary" was thrown around everywhere by fans and professional English commentators alike when they were playing in the UAE. The results speak for themselves.

  • landl47 on May 30, 2012, 21:28 GMT

    @jimmy2s: You're quite wrong. Both England's players and supporters are respectful of other countries' teams. England lost the test series in UAE because their batsmen hadn't played any first-class cricket for 3 months and were under-prepared. So well were the lessons learned that England won 6 out of the 7 shorter-format games that followed the test series. England might lose to SA (I have great respect for the quality of the SA seam attack and their 4 world-class batsmen), but even if they do I'll promise you two things: SA won't win with ease and they won't win because of Tahir.

  • Indianpunjabi on May 30, 2012, 20:35 GMT

    Hahaha Anil Kumble was the Best Spinner among india and pakistan...check his stats and compare haha

  • BowledYa on May 30, 2012, 16:40 GMT

    It is incorrect to say that Pakistani players do not go to the legends to learn. They all have. Imran Khan, Wasim, Waqar, Abdul Qadir - all have taught (even if informally) the next generation of Pak cricketers. That's what makes the Pakistani team competitive all the time.

  • AJ_Tiger86 on May 30, 2012, 15:39 GMT

    Imran Tahir is extremely overrated and ordinary spinner. Paul Harris would have been a better option of the Saffers.

  • Siddie on May 30, 2012, 14:52 GMT

    imran tahir is a great bowler in the making..i hope he does very well for south africa but not when he is playing against pakiatan...LOL

  • AllroundCricketFan on May 30, 2012, 12:27 GMT

    Good luck to Tahir. He is a great servant to this sport - and has made South Africa his home. Loved by Saffas and Pakistanis(I think)

  • WickyRoy.paklover on May 30, 2012, 11:07 GMT

    @landl47,u seem to have zero knowledge of leg spin as u tryng to defy king of leg spin 4 obvious reasns as it was usd to be one man show in late 80's when qadir bowld at poms,i hope u remembr 54/9 against ur team,learn to admire d legnds which r nt 4rm ur team,even warne usd to learn 4rm qadir,imran would also prove a handful against ur team

  • Noball_Specialist on May 30, 2012, 10:55 GMT

    View his First Class record. Know that he worked very very hard for his plaudits.

  • alonetiger on May 30, 2012, 10:01 GMT

    tahir will b the highest wicket taker in the upcoming england-africa test series,,and specialy now coz he is much mature and a more improved high class act now,and the king of the leg spin sir abdul qadir s tips will make him more dangerous against england,,,the master of legspin sir abdul qadir is a roll model for shane warne and kumble,mushtaq,and kaneria,but its amazing that none of these guys could bowl the sharp gugly which only qadir could toss and throw,qadir used to send the whole english side towards the dressing room in his time many many time all alone.and for him,,getting 5,,6,,7 and 8 wicket in an innings was kind a joke,only bkz no batsman could judge him including sir viv richard,good luck tahir

  • doctornikki on May 30, 2012, 9:35 GMT

    imran tahir,a great ambassador for Pak-SA relations..love him and his fairy tale love story that took him to SA....Pakistan leading the world in top notch spin bowling these days...

  • wrenx on May 30, 2012, 9:33 GMT

    @landl47 underestimating an opponent is a hallmark of English cricket, and the usual precursor to a hammering. Lessons never really get learned, no matter how bitter the humbling, such as England's capitulation in the UAE. Tahir performed very well in England for Hampshire in 2011 - he'll no doubt find rewards from early on in the tests, should he be selected. While the English side is celebrating like they've conquered the world by nudging past a woeful West Indian side, Kallis & Morkel have been bending their backs in India, Philander's been putting in the overs for Somerset, and Tahir's travelling to refine his game. If the batting clicks, SA will win with ease

  • Syed_Yasir_Shere on May 30, 2012, 9:08 GMT

    Tahir is a very talented lad, good to see that he is seeking for more & more to strengthen his abilities & Abdul Qadir is a perfect choice for him. SA should have to select him in ODIs & T20s also, though its very difficult to sideline Botha. On the other side Tahir has to show his experience in the game. Wish him best of luck in upcoming series, hope he'll give his best against outclass batting line of England.

  • mahjut on May 30, 2012, 8:58 GMT

    Tahir is better than Rehman and Hafeez, in my opinion ... and arguably as good as Ajmal and Afridi (though Ajmal has really come on in the last year or so, but hard to compare offie's and leggie's really). I think Tahir probably has too many loose balls to be a 'champion' yet, BUT he has taken wickets galore in two continents at FC level and was obviously no slouch when he started out in PK if he made the u19 team. He has quite a lot to prove at test level but i think he has it in him to be every bit as good as spinners (both leggie's and offie's) playing international cricket at the moment. good luck to him in England ... and tighten up lad! (watched him in last year's county T20 and he bowled some shockingly loose stuff ... along with some really tight stuff)

  • on May 30, 2012, 8:51 GMT

    @Raja Jayaraman Amla has an Indian connection. his ancestors came from present day Gujarat. why should he go to Pak and that too learn batting ? lol.

  • TsoroM on May 30, 2012, 8:36 GMT

    Tahir is a very talented leggie and we are very proud to have him in SA. South Africa arguably have the best pace attack in the world right, which has seen Imran not bowl too many overs and at times playing the holding spinner's role, rather than attack, which will explain his test record coupled with conditions he's played those tests in. I agree that Ajmal and Rehman are good spinners, but I want to see them take a lot of wickets in SA, Eng And Aus, not only in the UAE and all these subcontinental pitches to be convinced they are better than Tahir.

  • on May 30, 2012, 7:35 GMT

    Good for him, he never played for Pakistan. Look at all our superstars and legends who had to go through humiliation. PCB needs to get their act right and respect players if they are looking to get any respect from others.

  • Ahsan_Shere on May 30, 2012, 6:59 GMT

    got to go with AndyZaltzmannsHair, when Tahir was playing U19 cricket Saqlain & Mushtaq were on their peak, it was so difficult to make the playing XI, after 2003 Danesh Kaneria held the place for a while which propels Tahir to try England & South Africa, it was a good decision because Ajmal & Abdur Rahman could give him further tougher times later.

  • A.GHAFFARCHHEENA on May 30, 2012, 6:49 GMT

    Imran is a good talent but in pakistan he has no room in the team as Saeed Ajmal, AFRIDI, HAFEEZ and Abdu Rahman are more talented comparatively.. BEST OF LUCK IMRAN against England

  • on May 30, 2012, 6:35 GMT

    also Amla can go to pakistan for Practice (No Problem)

  • on May 30, 2012, 6:26 GMT

    Tahir made his name in county cricket . . . .watch out england!

  • on May 30, 2012, 6:08 GMT

    Dont see anything that much "Champion" in Tahir, anyway proud as an asian. Good luck!

  • sherishahmir on May 30, 2012, 5:21 GMT

    Best wishes for I Tahir with South Africa, hoping he learn something special with great leggie Qadir and display against Eng in forthcoming tour to snatch top test team position for his brilliant country of SAfrica.

  • muffy_55 on May 30, 2012, 5:17 GMT

    This is very very unfortunate for PAK....Imran tahir would have been a good back up for likes of Ajmal and Abdur rehman

  • gullycover on May 30, 2012, 5:02 GMT

    Qadir lied about one thing though. He said, he has only shared his expertise with Shahid Afridi and Imran Tahir. Wrong. Shane Warne spent countless hours in Lahore with Qadir in the nineties and turned into a rulthless matchwinner afterwards. Look at Afridi in the last 3,4 years. He has been transformed into a matchwinning bowler since he sought advice from Qadir. Watch out England this summer, looks like somebody would be in trouble if past performances against Pakistani spinners in UAE are any indications.

  • on May 30, 2012, 4:44 GMT

    Brilliant article, i think he made a wise choice playing for South Africa if everyone looks beyond patriotic rhetoric. He is playing in a more mature and professional environment so he realises the importance of stepping up in the game. How many Pakistani batsmen and bowlers of current era have actually taken the initiative of going to the cricketing greats and have asked for their expertise. None comes to my memory. After Imran Khan's era of bringing world cup glory to Pakistan, cricket has become more of a commercial get rich proposition, the players do not realise that they need to develop in the game for a longer career span.

    @ AndyZaltzmannsHair, i have read your cricketing ventures in your blogs and i think you gave up too soon :) you shouldve been there in the ground more, taken a few more cricketing tips and tried your heart out to get to the top, who knows we could be reading your cricketing stats, though your cricketing satire is flawless nonetheless.

  • on May 30, 2012, 4:42 GMT

    haha we dont need him...we have thousands better than him....keep enjoying with south africa :P

  • jabrankundi on May 30, 2012, 4:18 GMT

    Coming to Pakistan to train in the May/June heat! All the best to Tahir. It's a shame how we as Pakistanis do not give as much respect to our legends as foreigners do.

  • neerajprasher on May 30, 2012, 3:59 GMT

    He knows where the future is !!!!

  • landl47 on May 30, 2012, 3:57 GMT

    Come to think of it, Qadir's own average of 32.80 in tests isn't that impressive considering that he played 48 of his 67 tests in the sub-continent.

  • landl47 on May 30, 2012, 3:51 GMT

    Tahir's a decent first-class cricketer, but hasn't done anything in his tests so far to indicate that Pakistan made a big mistake in not picking him. 18 wickets in 7 tests at an average of 37 isn't going to keep the England batsmen awake at night. Remember Mishra? Took 0-170 last year for India in a test in which Swann got 9-208. It's one area where England has a big advantage over SA.

  • Trevor_G on May 30, 2012, 3:20 GMT

    Good for Imri. PAK's loss is our (SA's) gain, and thanks to Abdul Q. On another note, I wish that we had seen some PAK talent in IPL 2012.

  • shah_of_usa on May 30, 2012, 3:17 GMT

    it's great to see Tahir seeking help of a great leggie.....hope he can learn some tricks from Qadir

  • Wooster1 on May 30, 2012, 0:53 GMT

    We should have invested in Tahir rather than the never-learning Kaneria. There's always room for a quality leg spinner.

  • Chris_P on May 30, 2012, 0:49 GMT

    Good to see Qadir putting something back into the game. He was the one shining light for spinners during the Windies domination before Warne came along. Someone who was admired by all his opponents. I wish him continued good health, a true legend of the modern game.

  • rahulcricket007 on May 30, 2012, 0:31 GMT

    DON'T KNOW WHY QADIR BHAI IS SAYING HE IS REGRET THAT TAHIR DIDN'T PLAY FOR PAK . I DON'T THINK THAT HE WOULD HAVE BEEN SELETED IN THE TEAM AHEAD OF AJMAL , REHMAN .

  • Sinhaya on May 30, 2012, 0:29 GMT

    @Wacky_Cric_Lover, even if Tahir wanted to play for Pakistan, he wont have a place thanks to Ajmal and Rehman. Also, his personal circumstances were such that he wanted to move to South Africa and settle with his wife there.

  • on May 30, 2012, 0:06 GMT

    Better bowler in pakistan than tahir. So itz better tahir settled in southafrica.

  • johnathonjosephs on May 29, 2012, 23:52 GMT

    A question. If Tahir can simply ask Qadir for help, can't other bowlers do the same? Why doesn't anybody (except for Malinga in the CB Series) ask Wasim for pointers? Nobody going to McGrath? Warne? Murali? Yea, they're retired, but I bet they won't mind spednding some times in the nets

  • allcricket365 on May 29, 2012, 23:20 GMT

    you can be as good as you can be but if dont know anybody it Pakistan you are nobody Imran did the right thing there is only one life one chance, people who are caplaining did not have the chance to migrate:)

  • johnathonjosephs on May 29, 2012, 23:08 GMT

    Does anybody know why Tahir ISN"T playing for Pakistan? A 2 pace/2 spinner quartet would be wonderful

  • Syed_imran_abbas on May 29, 2012, 22:12 GMT

    qadir was amzing.. who could be better to learn googly than googly inventor mr qadir.. best of luck tahir.

  • Se-Cricket on May 29, 2012, 21:53 GMT

    I am sure Imran Tahir is a fine spinner but there are only 16 people who can be part of the squad. Abdul Qadir may be impressed by Imran Tahir's attitude and his talent but with Saeed Ajmal and Abdur Rehman already in the team as full-time spinners and Shahid Afridi and Mohammad Hafeez as spinning all-rounders it is very difficult to imagine of Imran Tahir making the playing XI of any Pakistan side whether it be Test, ODI or T20.

    I think Imran saw the writing on the wall and made the right decision for himself as he would have been a very talented yet very unlucky cricketer to never possibly make the playing XI. Playing for SA allows him to play at the highest levels and make some money - which he would have not been able to do had he put all his eggs in playing for Pakistan.

    I hope he does well in England.

  • MWaqqar on May 29, 2012, 20:48 GMT

    If Imran had remained in Pakistan, I doubt he would have played in the presence of Kaneria, Saeed Ajmal, Abdul Rehman.

  • Nadeem1976 on May 29, 2012, 20:32 GMT

    With Mushtaq and Saqlain at their best in 90s' it was not possible for tahir to get into Pakistani team but past is past, he is part of SA team and I am happy that he is taking advise from none other than magician Qadir. I hope Tahir destroys this so called #1 team in the world england.

  • venbas on May 29, 2012, 20:18 GMT

    @wiseshah - LOL...do you need glasses or what...the old guy with the white beard in the pic is actually Abdul Quadir and yes being born in 1955, Quadir is naturally nearing his 57th birthday!!!

  • iBilal on May 29, 2012, 20:11 GMT

    am i the only one here who is delighted that he is playing for SA. With the likes of Ajmal, Rehman and Afridi, I highly doubt that Tahir would have made it to the Pak squad as main spinner. So lets be happy that the bloke is representing a country and enjoying international cricket

  • hamqad on May 29, 2012, 19:58 GMT

    The guy with the wrinkles and white hair is Abdul Qadir. lol. I guess you are very in tune with Pakistan's cricket history, Wiseshah. Tahir is around 30 and a very good leg spinner. I would rate him higher than Kaneria. Its sad we never gave him the opportunity to play for Pakistan. Much like Saqlain, he too got fed up with politics in the Paki cricket setup. I blame the system, not the player. He was looking out for himself, which everyone has a right to.

  • on May 29, 2012, 19:46 GMT

    Even Tahir is seeking advice from the legendary leggie that is Abdul Qadir to help improve his game, so enough said about seeking out other players for advice.

  • wiseshah on May 29, 2012, 19:23 GMT

    how old is this tahir? from his white beard and wrinkle he looks like he is 50 yrs old.

  • Wacky_Cric_Lover on May 29, 2012, 19:21 GMT

    Nothing surprising here...Pakistani talent has impressed everyone everywhere and also introduced new skills to the world of cricket...However it is shame that this guy is not playing with Pakistan...

  • AndyZaltzmannsHair on May 29, 2012, 19:07 GMT

    Wouldn't get into the Pak team. Possibly first choice back up.

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  • AndyZaltzmannsHair on May 29, 2012, 19:07 GMT

    Wouldn't get into the Pak team. Possibly first choice back up.

  • Wacky_Cric_Lover on May 29, 2012, 19:21 GMT

    Nothing surprising here...Pakistani talent has impressed everyone everywhere and also introduced new skills to the world of cricket...However it is shame that this guy is not playing with Pakistan...

  • wiseshah on May 29, 2012, 19:23 GMT

    how old is this tahir? from his white beard and wrinkle he looks like he is 50 yrs old.

  • on May 29, 2012, 19:46 GMT

    Even Tahir is seeking advice from the legendary leggie that is Abdul Qadir to help improve his game, so enough said about seeking out other players for advice.

  • hamqad on May 29, 2012, 19:58 GMT

    The guy with the wrinkles and white hair is Abdul Qadir. lol. I guess you are very in tune with Pakistan's cricket history, Wiseshah. Tahir is around 30 and a very good leg spinner. I would rate him higher than Kaneria. Its sad we never gave him the opportunity to play for Pakistan. Much like Saqlain, he too got fed up with politics in the Paki cricket setup. I blame the system, not the player. He was looking out for himself, which everyone has a right to.

  • iBilal on May 29, 2012, 20:11 GMT

    am i the only one here who is delighted that he is playing for SA. With the likes of Ajmal, Rehman and Afridi, I highly doubt that Tahir would have made it to the Pak squad as main spinner. So lets be happy that the bloke is representing a country and enjoying international cricket

  • venbas on May 29, 2012, 20:18 GMT

    @wiseshah - LOL...do you need glasses or what...the old guy with the white beard in the pic is actually Abdul Quadir and yes being born in 1955, Quadir is naturally nearing his 57th birthday!!!

  • Nadeem1976 on May 29, 2012, 20:32 GMT

    With Mushtaq and Saqlain at their best in 90s' it was not possible for tahir to get into Pakistani team but past is past, he is part of SA team and I am happy that he is taking advise from none other than magician Qadir. I hope Tahir destroys this so called #1 team in the world england.

  • MWaqqar on May 29, 2012, 20:48 GMT

    If Imran had remained in Pakistan, I doubt he would have played in the presence of Kaneria, Saeed Ajmal, Abdul Rehman.

  • Se-Cricket on May 29, 2012, 21:53 GMT

    I am sure Imran Tahir is a fine spinner but there are only 16 people who can be part of the squad. Abdul Qadir may be impressed by Imran Tahir's attitude and his talent but with Saeed Ajmal and Abdur Rehman already in the team as full-time spinners and Shahid Afridi and Mohammad Hafeez as spinning all-rounders it is very difficult to imagine of Imran Tahir making the playing XI of any Pakistan side whether it be Test, ODI or T20.

    I think Imran saw the writing on the wall and made the right decision for himself as he would have been a very talented yet very unlucky cricketer to never possibly make the playing XI. Playing for SA allows him to play at the highest levels and make some money - which he would have not been able to do had he put all his eggs in playing for Pakistan.

    I hope he does well in England.