ISLAMABAD, Jul 25 (APP):The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Thursday invited its ardent cricket fans and followers to vote for Pakistan’s greatest Test from its 67-year proud history.
The voting will open on Friday, 26 July, at 10am and close on Monday, 29 July, at 10am, following which the PCB will announce the results through a media release, said a press release issued by the board.
The poll will be conducted on the PCB’s official Facebook page and Twitter handle, and is linked to the worldwide launch of the ICC World Test Championship, which will take place on July 29.
The challenging and difficult task of selecting four Tests from a total of 432 Tests was carried out by an independent and highly respected panel of cricket experts and historians, namely Benedict Bermange, Mazher Arshad, Dr Nauman Niaz, Osman Samiuddin and Qamar Ahmed.
The four Tests chosen by the independent panel are:1954 v England, The Oval 1987 v India, Bangalore,1994 v Australia, Karachi and 1999 v India, Chennai.
PCB Managing Director Wasim Khan said: “Fans are the real assets of the PCB and it is appropriate they get an opportunity to vote for Pakistan’s greatest Test to date and join the global cricket community in celebrating the ICC World Test Championship launch.
“I want to thank the jury for undertaking this arduous task of picking four Tests, which shaped Pakistan’s Test cricket. We will now wait anxiously to find out which was Pakistan’s greatest Test in view of the fans and the followers.”
In 1954 Test against England at the Oval, Pakistan, at the back of Fazal Mahmood’s 12 for 99, became the only country to win a Test on their first-ever tour of England. This feat, which helped Pakistan to level the four-match series 1-1, continues to remain unequalled.
In 1987 Test against India at Bangalore, the spin pair of Tauseef Ahmed and Iqbal Qasim wreaked havoc to hand Pakistan their first-ever series win in India. After four high-scoring draws, the two shared 18 wickets between them as Pakistan carved out a thrilling 16-run victory in the fifth and the last match of the series.
In 1994 Test against Australia at Karachi, as Australia comfortably inched closer to end their 35-year-long win-drought in Pakistan, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Mushtaq Ahmed sprung life to the contest. Their spectacular 57-run partnership, which at that time was the highest last wicket partnership in a Test match win, saw Pakistan to a one-wicket win.
In 1999 against India at Chennai, despite Sachin Tendulkar’s second-innings 136 going in vain, the Chennai crowd gave a standing ovation at the end of the game. The cheer, however, was for the touring team, which was visiting their soil after a gap of almost 12 years. Pakistan, at the back of Shahid Afridi’s century and Saqlain Mushtaq’s match haul of 10 wickets, crossed the line by 12 runs in a nail-biting contest.
The ICC is introducing the World Test Championship to give context to bilateral Test series. The nine top-ranked sides in the world will compete in the tournament, with each side playing six series on a home-and-away basis against mutually selected opponents in the two-year cycle. The top two teams will play the final in June 2021.
Pakistan’s run in the long-awaited championship will kick off in October when they will host Sri Lanka for a two-match Test series.
The following is Pakistan’s schedule in the ICC World Test Championship:
October 2019 – v Sri Lanka (two home Tests)
November 2019 – v Australia (two away Tests)
January 2020 – v Bangladesh (two home Tests)
July/August 2020 – v England (three away Tests)
December 2020 – v New Zealand (two away Tests)
January 2021 – v South Africa (two home Tests)