Wahab Riaz: The Farewell of a Cricketing Legend

Wahab Riaz

On Wednesday, August 16, Pakistani fast bowler Wahab Riaz declared his retirement from international cricket, marking the end of a significant chapter in his cricketing journey. While he bids farewell to the international arena, Wahab’s commitment to the game remains evident as he continues to ply his trade in franchise cricket.

The left-arm pacer stepped into the world of international cricket in 2008, making his debut for Pakistan in an ODI match against Zimbabwe. In the same year, he also marked his entry into T20Is. Just two years later, he solidified his presence by earning his Test debut during Pakistan’s tour of England. Notably, in his maiden Test innings, he achieved a remarkable five-wicket haul, leaving an indelible mark.

In 2011, Wahab Riaz once again captured the spotlight with a stellar performance by securing a five-wicket haul against India during the World Cup semifinal. Although Pakistan faced defeat, his remarkable contribution was widely acknowledged. He further graced the 2015 World Cup, creating cherished memories. His all-round brilliance was on display during the match against Zimbabwe, where he scored an impressive 54 not out from 46 balls and added to his laurels by taking 4 wickets, earning the prestigious Man of the Match title.

His dynamic display against eventual champions Australia in the quarterfinal earned him immense praise from the cricketing fraternity. Notably, Wahab Riaz also participated in the 2019 World Cup, concluding his international career as Pakistan’s second-highest wicket-taker in the tournament. His remarkable feat is second only to the legendary Wasim Akram, a testament to Wahab’s impactful presence on the cricket field.

Wahab Riaz announces retirement

Wahab Riaz chose the platform X (formerly known as Twitter) as the avenue to communicate his significant decision – retirement from international cricket. In his released statement, he openly shared that the idea of hanging up his boots had been on his mind for the past couple of years.

Expressing his thoughts, Wahab Riaz stated, “For the past two years, I have been vocal about my plans to retire from international cricket in 2023. I am now more convinced than ever that I have given my best to serve my country and the national team. Representing Pakistan at the international level has been a source of immense honor and privilege.”

As he bids farewell to this significant chapter of his life, he expressed enthusiasm about the forthcoming journey in franchise cricket. He shared, “I am thrilled to embark on a new adventure in franchise cricket, where I hope to entertain and inspire audiences while competing against some of the best talents in the world.”

Wahab Riaz’s international career encompasses participation in 27 Tests, 91 ODIs, and 36 T20Is, representing Pakistan with dedication and distinction. His contributions include a remarkable tally of 83 wickets in Tests, 120 wickets in ODIs, and 34 wickets in T20Is. Notably, his final appearance for Pakistan occurred in 2020, while his most recent competitive cricket engagement took place earlier this year, representing Peshawar Zalmi in PSL 2023.

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