Full name Mohammad Imran Tahir
Born March 27, 1979, Lahore, Punjab
Current age 40 years 116 days
Major teams South Africa, Chennai Super Kings, Delhi Daredevils, Derbyshire, Dolphins, Durham, Durham 2nd XI, Easterns, Guyana Amazon Warriors, Hampshire, Hampshire 2nd XI, Lahore City, Lahore Lions, Lahore Ravi, Lahore Whites, Lions, Middlesex, Middlesex 2nd XI, Multan Sultans, Nottinghamshire, Pakistan A, Pakistan International Airlines, Pakistan Under-19s, Redco Pakistan Ltd, Rising Pune Supergiants, Sialkot, South Africa A, Staffordshire, Sui Gas Corporation of Pakistan, Surrey, Sussex 2nd XI, Titans, Warriors, Warwickshire, Warwickshire 2nd XI, Water and Power Development Authority, World-XI, Yorkshire
Playing role Bowler
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Legbreak googly
|Test debut||South Africa v Australia at Cape Town, Nov 9-11, 2011 scorecard|
|Last Test||India v South Africa at Delhi, Dec 3-7, 2015 scorecard|
|ODI debut||South Africa v West Indies at Delhi, Feb 24, 2011 scorecard|
|Last ODI||Australia v South Africa at Manchester, Jul 6, 2019 scorecard|
|T20I debut||Sri Lanka v South Africa at Colombo (RPS), Aug 2, 2013 scorecard|
|Last T20I||South Africa v Sri Lanka at Cape Town, Mar 19, 2019 scorecard|
|Last First-class||Gloucestershire v Derbyshire at Bristol, Sep 25-28, 2017 scorecard|
|List A debut||1997/98|
|Last List A||Australia v South Africa at Manchester, Jul 6, 2019 scorecard|
|T20s debut||Lahore Lions v Karachi Dolphins at Karachi, Feb 24, 2006 scorecard|
|Last T20s||Essex v Surrey at Chelmsford, Jul 19, 2019 scorecard|
|Bat & Bowl||Team||Opposition||Ground||Match Date||Scorecard|
|0/39||Surrey||v Essex||Chelmsford||19 Jul 2019||T20|
|1/59||South Africa||v Australia||Manchester||6 Jul 2019||ODI # 4188|
|0/36||South Africa||v Sri Lanka||Chester-le-Street||28 Jun 2019||ODI # 4176|
|2/41, 1*||South Africa||v Pakistan||Lord's||23 Jun 2019||ODI # 4171|
|0/33||South Africa||v New Zealand||Birmingham||19 Jun 2019||ODI # 4165|
|4/29||South Africa||v Afghanistan||Cardiff||15 Jun 2019||ODI # 4160|
|-||South Africa||v West Indies||Southampton||10 Jun 2019||ODI # 4156|
|0, 0/58||South Africa||v India||Southampton||5 Jun 2019||ODI # 4150|
|2/57, 10*||South Africa||v Bangladesh||The Oval||2 Jun 2019||ODI # 4147|
|2/61, 0||South Africa||v England||The Oval||30 May 2019||ODI # 4143|
Imran Tahir moved from Pakistan to South Africa via the UK for the love of a woman. In the process, he played for more than 25 teams, including four English counties, three South African franchises and an IPL team while carving a reputation as one of the best limited-overs' legspinners of his time. A feisty character with a celebration longer than most fast-bowlers' run-ups and a range of variations, Tahir made the googly his biggest weapon in the limited-overs formats.
That was not always what Tahir was being primed for. When he arrived in South Africa, after meeting his wife Sumayya during the 1998 Under-19 World Cup, he established himself in the first-class set-up. He was the third highest wicket-taker in the 2008-09 first-class competition and was called up to the South African Test squad in January 2010 during their home series against England.
However, later the same day the decision was overturned after it became clear Tahir was not yet eligible to play for South Africa. Tahir went back to the domestic circuit and consistently picked up wickets in the 2010-11 season, when he also became a citizen. Less than a week after he was naturalised, he was picked in South Africa's squad for the one-dayers against India. But he had to wait until the 2011 World Cup for his debut and he made an immediate impact. He finished the tournament as South Africa's second-highest wicket-taker.
That summer, Tahir made his Test debut against Australia in Cape Town, in the same match as Vernon Philander. Despite all the hype around how he would complete South Africa's attack, Tahir struggled for the same success he had at the domestic level in a pace-heavy pack and on pitches unsuitable for his style of bowling. In his 11th Test, against Australia in Adelaide in November 2012, it seemed the experiment was over. Tahir's figures were 0 for 260, the most expensive returns without a wicket in Test history, and he was dropped.
He remained out of contention in all formats until South Africa's tour to the UAE in October 2013, where he would play against his former countrymen. Tahir took his first Test five-for in Dubai but it did not earn him a more permanent place. Instead, he carved a niche for himself in the shorter formats, where he showed much more control with his craft.
Tahir earned a reputation for being able to contain the middle-periods of matches while also taking wickets, and his rise coincided with South Africa's limited-overs recovery, especially after the 2015 World Cup. Tahir was even more effective in the 20-over format and by April 2016 had risen to No.2 on the ICC bowler rankings.