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Taufeeq Umar

Name: Taufeeq Umar

Birth date: June 20, 1981
Hometown: Lahore, Punjab
Teams: Pakistan, Habib Bank Limited, ICL Pakistan XI, Lahore, Lahore Eagles, Lahore Badshahs, Mumbai Champs, Pakistan Reserves
Debut: Test: August 29, 2001 l ODI: October 27, 2001
 
 

A stylish left-handed batsman, Taufeeq Umar played his first international game against Bangladesh in 2001 and became the eighth player to score a century on Test debut for Pakistan, subsequently establishing himself as a regular for the next couple of years.

 

He struggled against Australia at Sharjah in October 2002, as did most of the Pakistan team, but he showed potential as a long-term solution to Pakistan's opening woes with some good performances in South Africa a few months later, including a match total of 202 in the Test at Cape Town against an attack including Sean Pollock and left-hander specialist Makhaya Ntini. He followed that up with with an even better series at home against the same side, scoring 313 runs at an average of 78.

 

However, a string of low scores against New Zealand, India and England in between 2003 and 2006 saw him fall out of favour of the national selectors before being dropped altogether squad after the tour of England in August 2006. Two years later, he joined the controversial Indian Cricket League. When ICL came to an abrupt end, Taufeeq returned to the fold and resumed playing domestic cricket for Habib Bank Limited.

 

In 2010, Taufeeq managed to capture the attention of the selectors after some decent performances on the domestic circuit and made his comeback to Test cricket in the series against South Africa in the UAE. Some gritty performances saw him establish a solid opening partnership with Mohammad Hafeez and Taufeeq went on to score his first international double century against Sri Lanka in 2011, becoming the first Pakistani opener to do so since 1992. He averaged 45 in the series in New Zealand, 54 against Sri Lanka and 64 against Bangladesh. Regarded as a Test specialist, Umar has played 22 ODIs, scoring 504 runs at an average of just 24.

 

He was also part of the Pakistan side that whitewashed England in the UAE but last figured for Pakistan against Sri Lanka in 2012, where he scored 165 runs in three Tests. Umar was however recalled for the 2013 Tour of South Africa. However, a leg injury ruled him out for the duration of the tour. With Pakistan's continuing opening woes, Taufeeq Umar will no doubt be hoping for a recall to the Pakistan Test side.

 

[Last updated: December 23, 2013]