The International Cricket Council (ICC) today announced that Waqar Younis and Adam Gilchrist will be inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame later this week.
Waqar, a former Pakistan captain, will join the exclusive club during the first Twenty20 International between Pakistan and Sri Lanka at Dubai International Cricket Stadium in Dubai Sports City on 11 December, while two days later in Perth, former Australia wicketkeeper Gilchrist will be honoured during the tea interval of the third Ashes Test match between Australia and England at the WACA.
Waqar and Gilchrist become the 70th and 71st male members of the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame.
Waqar joins countryman Hanif Mohammad as well as his former team-mates Imran Khan, Javed Miandad and Wasim Akram, who were among the first intake of inductees into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame, while Gilchrist is the 19th male Australia player after Richie Benaud, Allan Border, Don Bradman, Greg Chappell, Ian Chappell, Neil Harvey, Dennis Lillee, Ray Lindwall, Rodney Marsh, Keith Miller, Bill O’Reilly, Steve Waugh, Victor Trumper, Clarrie Grimmett, Frederick Spofforth, Alan Davidson, Glenn McGrath and Shane Warne, to be inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame.
Two further ICC Cricket Hall of Fame inductees will be announced later this month.
Nicknamed ‘The Burewala Express’, Waqar is famously known as one half of ‘The Two Ws’ – a moniker for the fast bowling pair of Wasim Akram and Waqar. A famed exponent of reverse swing, he claimed 373 wickets from 87 Tests and 416 scalps from 262 One-Day Internationals.
The 42-year-old, who was born in Vehari, Punjab, also led his country in 17 Tests and 62 ODIs. In a first-class career spanning a decade-and-a-half, he snared 956 wickets from 228 matches with a best of 8-17.
Waqar’s Test figures bear ample testimony to his brilliance – he registered 22 hauls of five wickets or more in an innings and on five occasions took 10 wickets or more in a match. He also boasted the best strike-rate of any bowler with more than 200 wickets in Tests during his playing days – a record that’s been broken by Dale Steyn. His best bowling performance in a Test came almost 20 years ago, when he registered match figures of 13-135 against Zimbabwe in the first Test at Karachi, having taken 7-91 and 6-44.
His feats in limited-overs cricket were no less impressive. He remains to date the only bowler to take five wickets in an innings in three consecutive ODIs (On November 4, 6 and 9, 1990). He was also the fastest to the milestone of 400 wickets in ODIs. He was a member of the Pakistan team that reached the final of the ICC Cricket World Cup in 1999. His best performance in ODIs came when he led his side against England at Headingley in 2001, as he notched up
Having retired from cricket after the ICC Cricket World Cup 2003, Waqar now plies his trade as a coach and commentator.
On his forthcoming induction, Waqar said: “It is a huge honour for me to be inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame. I simply cannot wait for the day to come. Joining such an elite group in front of what promises to be a full house in Dubai for the first Pakistan-Sri Lanka Twenty20 International will only make the experience more memorable.
“As I look forward to the day, I’m truly grateful to the people who’ve considered me worthy of such an honour. I owe a big thanks to those who’ve nominated me – the voting academy and all living members of the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame – as well as my family, my former team-mates and thousands of my fans and supporters who backed me every single time I wore Pakistan colours.”
Gilchrist was one of Australia’s most prolific wicketkeeper-batsmen, having represented his country in 96 Tests in a career that spanned 12 years. He amassed 5,570 Test runs and claimed 416 dismissals behind the stumps, including 379 catches and 37 stumpings. He also captained the Test team on six occasions.
He scored 17 Test centuries and 26 half-centuries, while his best performance with the bat came against South Africa in Johannesburg in 2002 when he scored 204 not out in an innings that saw Gilchrist hit 19 boundaries and eight sixes.
In the 287 ODIs he played, he amassed 9,619 ODI runs, dismissed batsmen 472 times behind the stumps and captained Australia 17 times. He scored 16 centuries and 55 half-centuries and his best innings in the one-day format saw him score 172 against Zimbabwe in Hobart, Tasmania.
Gilchrist was part of the Australia sides that won the ICC Cricket World Cup in 1999, 2003 and 2007, while he was also part of the team that lifted the ICC Champions Trophy in 2006. Gilchrist’s first-class career began in 1992 and when it ended in 2008, he had accumulated 10,334 runs and 811 dismissals as a wicketkeeper.
Gilchrist said of the induction: “I am delighted to be inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame and to be doing it in front of my home crowd on the first day of the third Test will be a very special occasion for me and my family.
“I’m looking forward to the day and would like to thank all the living Hall of Famers and voting academy who nominated and voted for me to join them.”
ICC Cricket Hall of Fame – initial inductees (55)
Sydney Barnes, Bishan Bedi, Alec Bedser, Richie Benaud, Allan Border, Ian Botham, Geoffrey Boycott, Donald Bradman, Greg Chappell, Ian Chappell, Denis Compton, Colin Cowdrey, Kapil Dev, Sunil Gavaskar, Lance Gibbs, Graham Gooch, David Gower, WG Grace, Tom Graveney, Gordon Greenidge, Richard Hadlee, Walter Hammond, Neil Harvey, George Headley, Jack Hobbs, Michael Holding, Leonard Hutton, Rohan Kanhai, Imran Khan, Alan Knott, Jim Laker, Harold Larwood, Dennis Lillee, Ray Lindwall, Clive Lloyd, Hanif Mohammad, Rodney Marsh, Malcolm Marshall, Peter May, Javed Miandad, Keith Miller, Bill O’Reilly, Graeme Pollock, Wilfred Rhodes, Barry Richards, Vivian Richards, Andy Roberts, Garfield Sobers, Brian Statham, Fred Trueman, Derek Underwood, Clyde Walcott, Everton Weekes, Frank Woolley, Frank Worrell
Herbert Sutcliffe, Steve Waugh, Wasim Akram, Victor Trumper, Clarrie Grimmett
Rachael Heyhoe Flint, Ken Barrington, Courtney Walsh, Joel Garner
Belinda Clark, Frederick Spofforth, Curtly Ambrose, Alan Davidson
Enid Bakewell, Brian Lara, Glenn McGrath and Shane Warne
Waqar Younis, Adam Gilchrist and two more to be announced later this year