The journey of Mohammad Yousuf is a tale of unusual courage, determination and unbeatable spirit. Mohammad Yousuf was born on 27th August 1974 in Lahore. He managed to play cricket with a piece of broken wood as he was unable to buy a cricket bat at that time due to paucity of funds.
However, destiny wanted him to do something greater for his nation. Yousuf overcame all odds and made into Pakistan national cricket squad in 1998 in both ODIs and Tests. Since then he never looked back.
As Yousuf turns 41 today, Pakistan Tribe brings to you some lesser known facts about majestic Mohammad Yousuf.
Roots and Background
Mohammad Yousuf, formerly known as YousufYouhana, was born to a very poor Christian family in Lahore, Pakistan. When he was just 20-year-old, he decided to ride rickshaws at Bahawalpur to earn some money. He did it for a brief period in those days.
ICC Cricket World Cup 1999
The elegant batsman was immediately selected for Pakistan’s national cricket squad for Cricket World Cup 1999. He amassed 161 runs at an average of 53 in the 4 world cup clashes and helped his team reached into the semis.
Awards and honors
The sublime performance of the batsman won him the coveted awards of ICC Test player of the year 2007 and Wisden Cricketer of the Year 2007. Yousuf has also bagged 18 Man of the Match (MOM) and 3 Man of the series (MOS) awards in ODIs. He also won 7 MOM and 3 MOS awards in his illustrious Test career.
In 2006, Mohammad Yousuf entered the record book in style; he garnered 1788 runs in just 11 Tests with 9 centuries and 3 half-centuries at an astonishing average of 99, which is still a world record over the last 9 years in a row.
A unique world record
The right-hander is the only one to have scored maximum runs without being dismissed in the history of ODI cricket. He amassed a total of 405 runs against Zimbabwe in 2002-2003.
The decision of the PCB (Pakistan Cricket Board) to impose lifetime ban on him in 2010 was extremely controversial. Another controversy involving the cricketer was his decision to secretly embrace Islam in 2005 without most knowing about it.
Muralitharan got Yousuf out 9 times in Tests, while Kumble and Herath claimed his wickets 7 and 6 times respectively. In ODIs, Kallis and Pollock bagged his wicket record 6-6 times followed by Kumble who dismissed him 5 times.
PCB called Mohammad Yousuf to play again for Pakistan later in 2010 following the team’s disastrous performance against England. He did play some matches and scored satisfactorily too but injuries hampered his prospect of playing further. Eventually, he lost his place in the team. Though he hasn’t officially announced his retirement as yet but his comeback to Pakistan’s Test team is certainly impossible now.