Thursday, August 28, 2008

Pakistani and Sussex Legspinner Mushtaq Ahmed Retires

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Mushtaq Ahmed
Former Pakistani and Sussex legspinner 38-year-old Mushtaq Ahmed has retired from cricket because of his persistent knee injury.

Mushtaq Ahmed, who played his last Test in October 2003, made the decision after six seasons and three county championship titles with English side Sussex.

According to The Argus in Brighton yesterday, Mushtaq is the greatest player to have represented the county in their 169 years. The instinct was to snort and think of Maurice Tate, John Snow, Ranjitsinhji and Ted Dexter. Yet it took the arrival of Mushtaq for Sussex to win the championship for the first time in 2003.

They succeeded again in 2006 and 2007 and Mushtaq's hauls of wickets for each season before this one - 103, 82, 80, 102 and 90 - reads more like the sequence of an in-form batsman than a bowler in the age of 16 championship matches. He could be the best overseas signing made by any county.

"This is a very hard decision for me to make, as I feel that I could possibly play one more year, but out of respect I would only do that if I felt 100 percent," Mushtaq said.

"I am going to miss playing for the club greatly," Mushtaq said. "I am truly honoured to have spent six wonderful years here. There are not enough words to express my gratitude to the club."

Mushtaq took 185 wickets in 52 Tests for Pakistan between 1990 and 2003, with a best of 7-56 against New Zealand in Christchurch in 1995. He fared less well in one-day internationals, with 161 wickets in 144 matches.

He ends his career with a total 1,407 wickets, 598 of them for Sussex.

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