Teams Played For
Pakistan, Lahore Qalandars, Somerset,Central Punjab, Worcestershire
Azhar Ali’s solid technique makes him a flawless batsman at middle order. He obeys the idea of tearing off the bowler with his defensive blocks. The right-handed batter is an off-side dominant cricketer and has a killer cover-drive. Ali is also the only fourth Pakistani cricketer who has scored a triple-century in the longest format.
Ali made his international debut in 2010 after a splendid four-year domestic career. The right-hander made his first appearance in the Test arena against Australia at the Lords, and made his maiden 50 in his very second match. His next assignment came during Pakistan’s controversial match-fixing scandal. He showed his true caliber in the Oval Test against England by striking an unbeaten 92-run knock.
As the right-hander’s career progressed, Ali solved Pakistan’s batting trouble at number 3.
He kept on impressing by scoring some important 50 plus scores. He smashed his maiden ton against Sri Lanka in Dubai in October 2011, and soon after his first century, he started converting it into daddy hundreds.
In 2011, Ali made his ODI debut against Ireland at Belfast and scored 39 runs, which was sufficient to get another game. Though the Test format suited the technically-abled Ali more. He hit his first double-ton in Test format against Bangladesh in 2015, at Dhaka, and followed it with the triple-hundred against West Indies in the Dubai Test in 2016. Then, in the Boxing-day Test, he played a fluent knock of 205 not-out at the MCG.
Ali was made the captain of Pakistan’s ODI team post the 2015 World Cup but after back-to-back series losses, he quit the leadership job to concentrate more as a batter for the Champions Trophy of 2017. The right-hander played the 2017 event as an opener and anchored a vital cog in his team’s title clinch against India.
In 2019, he replaced Sarfaraz Khan as the captain of the longest format but after a year into the job, Ali got replaced by Babar Azam. In his second stint of captaincy, Ali led Pakistan on eight occasions and could only win two games.
So far, the solid batter has enjoyed his career thoroughly and shown a lot of grit and determination. Post the retirement of Misbah ul Haq and Younis Khan, Azhar Ali has been the player to look-out-for in Pakistan's setup. He’s in the twilight of his career and now is concentrating more on the longest format.
(As of March 2021)