April 15, 1987, Multan, Punjab
Right hand bat
Right arm offbreak
Middle order batsman
Pakistan expects big things from Sohaib Maqsood, who shares his city of birth with Inzamam-ul-Haq (both were born in Multan), and is only the fifth Pakistan batsman to score fifties in his first two ODI innings. He made his international debut in 2013, but those who've seen him bat reckon he could have played for Pakistan much earlier had it not been for a spate of injuries.
Maqsood made his first-class debut way back in 2004 before he had turned 17, and was primarily an offspinner at the time: he batted at No. 11 and bowled 16 wicketless overs on debut. However, a back injury kept him out of first-class cricket for the next three years, and also cut short his aspirations to be a bowler.
He returned to first-class cricket in 2007-08 and immediately showed his skills as a middle-order batsman, scoring 537 runs at 53.70. He then battled through a period of poor form and a career-threatening ankle ligament injury in 2010, but all those setbacks only made him hungrier when he returned: in the 2010-11 season, he scored 951 runs, and in 2012-13, he amassed 1020. His List A stats that season were even more impressive: 944 runs at an average of 78 and a strike rate of 105, numbers which gave him a place in Pakistan's Twenty20 squad for the matches in Zimbabwe this year, and subsequently for the ODIs against South Africa in the UAE.
Maqsood's strength is his off-side strokeplay, with the back-foot punch being a favourite. On his ODI debut he scored 56 off 54 against a South African attack that included Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel and Lonwabo Tsotsobe, and followed that up with 53 when no other Pakistan batsman scored more than 30.
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