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The Good, The Bad and the Ugly of Younis Khan

A divisive character, Younis Khan bids farewell to international cricket

Regardless of reports which state otherwise, Younis Khan has decided to hang his boots from international cricket for good. A veteran of 116 test matches, Younis informed the PCB that the current cricket series would be his last. In tribute to his contributions to Pakistan cricket, we come up with the Good, the Bad and Ugly of Khan’s career.

The Good

  • 34 test centuries to 33 test fifties. That is a remarkable century conversion ratio for someone who has played over 100 test matches. Infact, there are only two other middle order batsmen who had 34 centuries after 116 test matches: Tendulkar and Sangakkara.
  • 10,000 test runs. The only Pakistani Batsmen to achieve this landmark. Inzamam and Miandad played more test matches, but did not even muster 9000 runs.
  • 133 catches. Younis was Pakistan’s safest fielder for a good portion of his career. Sure, he missed a few catches here and there which lost you a series, but we can forgive that, right? Right?
  • Captain of the World T20 winning championship side. It came two decades after Pakistan’s first international trophy and we haven’t gotten even close to winning one since.

The Bad

  • Khan’s self respect, or hidden ego, often got him into several high scale conflicts. From the bat incident with Inzamam to his rough patches with Shoaib Akhtar, it was never a walk in the park for Younis, the PCB and his team mates.
  • Muhammad Yousuf. He was easily Pakistan’s best batsmen post-Inzamam but it was largely a surging Younis and the politics between them that led to Muhammad Yousuf’s ouster from the team. 10,000 runs, 34 test centuries? This could have been Muhammad Yousuf and it would have been far more beautiful to watch.
  • At best, Younis was barely watchable. With a batting style that bordered on downright jittery, Younis Khan was not a sight for connoisseurs of the game. He was effective, yes, but you never switched on a game to see Younis pierce a cover drive to the boundary.

The Ugly

  • A torrid one day career. Younis literally walked through 265 ODI games and managed only 7 centuries at an average of 31.5 – this is paltry by standard in the modern day game.
  • Like most batsmen of the era, Younis will always be undermined due to the lack of world class bowlers in most teams. Much in line with the Sri Lankan Big Three and a myriad of Australian and English batsmen, Khan’s averages shot up immediately around the 2007 World Cup when a substantial number of world class bowlers hung up their boots.

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