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Last Updated: Friday, 15 August, 2003, 10:53 GMT 11:53 UK
Anwar calls it quits
Saeed Anwar
Anwar will be remembered as one of Pakistan's all-time greats
55 Tests, 4,052 runs, average 45.52, 11 centuries
237 ODIs, 8,823 runs, average 39.21, 20 centuries
Pakistan batsman Saeed Anwar has confirmed his retirement from first-class cricket.

The 34-year-old opener played 55 Tests and 247 limited overs internationals for Pakistan during his career and his innings of 194 against India at Madras six years ago remains a one-day record.

But he was dropped from the national squad following the World Cup earlier this year despite being the team's highest scorer in South Africa, with 218 runs in five games including 101 in a losing cause against arch-rivals India.

"I thought the selectors would give me a chance after the World Cup and I waited for two, three months but they decided otherwise," he said.

He was perhaps the most naturally gifted player that Pakistan ever had
Pakistan Cricket Board chief executive Rameez Raja

"I am retiring on a high note but am disappointed. I could have played for two more years."

Saeed, a stylish left-hander, made his international debut in a one-day match against West Indies in 1989 and followed that with his first Test appearance against the same opponents the following year.

He is Pakistan's second highest run scorer in one-day internationals, having hit 20 centuries, and lies sixth in their all-time Test list behind Javed Miandad, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Salim Malik, Zaheer Abbas and Mudassar Nazar.

Saeed Anwar batting against Australia
The drive through the off-side was Anwar's trademark stroke

The left-hander, who was one of Wisden's five Cricketers of the Year in 1997, captained Pakistan in seven Tests an 11 one-day games but did not appear at ease in the role.

And his career took a downturn when he was fined after refusing to give evidence to the Qayyum match-fixing inquiry in 2000.

Anwar became a devout Muslim following the death of his baby daughter the following year.

His batting form suffered but he announced that he wanted to continue his international career following the World Cup.

The selectors did not give him the chance as eight senior players were left out as they looked to the future, and Saeed has now decided there is no realistic prospect of him regaining his place.

His decision to retire comes only days before Pakistan begin a home series against Bangladesh.




SEE ALSO
Anwar dedicates ton to daughter
02 Mar 03  |  Pakistan
Anwar the devout Muslim
10 Nov 01  |  Cricket


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