Shafiq-ul-Haq


Shafiq-ul-Haq

Shafiq-ul-Haq (also known as Shafiqueul Haque) was a Bangladeshi cricketer who played in the 1979 ICC Trophy and the 1982 ICC Trophy in England. In the latter tournament he captained the side and they finished fourth. They won 4 and lost 3 games in this tournament.

As a Wicketkeeper

In its 30 year history of international cricket, Bangladesh have already produced three top class wicketkeepers, Shafiq-ul-Haq Hira in the 70's, Nasir Ahmed Nasu in the 80's and Khaled Mashud Pilot in more recent times. All three were highly competent, but Hira certainly had the edge over the other two, when it came to keeping wickets against the spinners.

He was lucky in a sense. Bangladesh had three quality spinners in his time, Lintu the left armer, Rumy , the leggie and (Syed) Ashraful Haque the offie. It was a delight to watch Hira keep wickets against these spinners. Keeping to Lintu was a special challenge, because he was much quicker than an average spinner. Hira also showed great ability in picking up Rumy, as the leg spinner used to mix up few googleys along with his leg-spinners.

During his time, he was the undisputed No 1. Keeper of the country. In fact two other keepers, Belal and Manju (elder brother of Nasu) occasionally played for the national side, but only as batsman. Hira himself, was no mean batsman. He scored vital runs down the order on many occasions. His unbeaten 51 against the Decan Blues (1978) helped Bangladesh reach 300 for the first time in international cricket. [ Hasan Babli. "Antorjartik Crickete Bangladesh". Khelar Bhuban Prakashani, Novermeber, 1994. ]

As a Captain

He captained Bangladesh between 79 to 83. In 82, Bangladesh reached the Semi-Final of ICC Trophy, before losing to eventual champions Zimbabwe. Players like Lipu (future captain), Rafiq, Nehal, Nadir Shah (now an internationally respected umpire) and many others matured under his captaincy.

After retiring from cricket, Hira has been actively involved with cricket as an administrator.

References


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