Us­man Qadir mulling a move out of Pak­istan

Pakistan Observer - - SPORTS -

LA­HORE—Us­man Qadir, the son of for­mer Pak­istan legspin­ner Ab­dul Qadir, may mi­grate to Aus­tralia or South Africa to pur­sue his cricket ca­reer. The 22year old has been weigh­ing his op­tions con­sid­er­ing the last time he played in the Pak­istan do­mes­tic cir­cuit was in 2014.

Us­man spent the last summer play­ing club cricket in Cape Town. Prior to that, he had won a call-up from South Aus­tralia in 2013 to play in the in­ter­state sec­ond XI com­pe­ti­tion. His stint with the Red­backs, how­ever, was cut short when he met with a car ac­ci­dent and had to re­turn home.

Us­man, also a legspin­ner, has played two Un­der-19 World Cups for Pak­istan and be­came a cen­trally con­tracted player in 2010. In 2012, he took a five-wicket haul against Sri Lanka Un­der-23s in the ACC Emerg­ing Play­ers tour­na­ment in Sin­ga­pore and was poised to make the se­nior team for a lim­ited-overs tour of West Indies in 2013, but wasn’t picked.

Lack of op­por­tu­ni­ties in the first­class cir­cuit as well drove Us­man into think­ing about life out­side Pak­istan. Although he played eight games for Na­tional Bank of Pak­istan in his de­but sea­son in 2013, he got to bowl only 84 overs. He was not used at all in his fi­nal four­day match, against Port Qasim Author­ity in De­cem­ber 2014 and hasn’t played a do­mes­tic game since.

An­other fac­tor that has con­trib­uted to Us­man’s trou­bles is a per­cep­tion of nepo­tism. His fa­ther Ab­dul is con­sid­ered one of the finest legspin­ners in the history of cricket. Rather than that be­ing a ben­e­fit, Us­man felt per­se­cuted by those who be­lieved he was handed a place in the XI be­cause of his fa­ther.

“I want to play cricket and I have come through the ranks be­cause of my own abil­ity,” Us­man told ESPNcricinfo. “But there is al­ways a sense of skep­ti­cism about my in­clu­sion in a team. I don’t want to spoil my pas­sion [for the game]. So I think I’d rather play my cricket where I can fo­cus only on my cricket rather than un­nec­es­sary crit­i­cism.”

Ab­dul, who has been a vo­cal critic of the Pak­istan cricket board, re­it­er­ated that he has never sought out a se­lec­tor to help his son’s chances.

“I, as a fa­ther and a for­mer crick­eter, have lost trust in our sys­tem to give a fair chance to our play­ers to prove them­selves,” he said.

“I don’t want to see my other son to go down and suf­fer due to this sys­tem which doesn’t re­spect their leg­ends. I never went to any se­lec­tor on be­half of my son and never will. My other sons were also ca­pa­ble enough to rep­re­sent Pak­istan but they didn’t grow but Us­man is very much ca­pa­ble and I know he has po­ten­tial for top-level cricket.

“I have al­lowed Us­man to de­cide about his fu­ture. I did hold him back from mi­grat­ing to Aus­tralia in 2013, and asked him to stay in Pak­istan. But now af­ter his be­ing ig­nored for more than three years, I don’t think it’s fair for me to stop him any­more.”

Us­man will have to live in South Africa or Aus­tralia for four years be­fore he be­comes el­i­gi­ble to play international cricket for them. How­ever, he can play fran­chise cricket in South Africa and grade cricket in Aus­tralia as an over­seas player.

“‘He has shown some in­ter­est [in rep­re­sent­ing Aus­tralia] but I also know he’s of sig­nif­i­cant in­ter­est in his home sys­tem,’’ Jamie Cox, who had been the di­rec­tor of cricket with South Aus­tralia, said in 2013. ‘’We’re pretty much tip-toe­ing our way through our op­tions from here.

‘’We’ve left the con­ver­sa­tion very open but we’ve made it clear to him that if he’s go­ing to come back here again we’re go­ing to want more of a com­mit­ment,’’ Cox said. —Agen­cies

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