Wasim Jaffer achieves what all of India’s great batsmen are unable to do in domestic cricket. Despite that, Wasim Jaffer is one of the most unlucky cricketers in the history of Indian cricket. This Mumbaikar right-handed opening batsman is the highest run-scorer in Indian domestic cricket.
He has five test match centuries, including two double centuries. But Wasim Jaffer played only 31 test matches for India.
Wasim Jaffer: One of the unlucky cricketers of India
Early Life Of Wasim Jaffer
Wasim Jaffer was born in Bombay(now Mumbai), Maharashtra. His father was a bus driver for BEST, and he grew up in a relatively lower middle class but a deeply religious environment. Jaffer was a school topper. But cricket was his passion. At the age of 15, Jaffer scored 400 not out in school competition. From there, he came to the limelight in Mumbai cricket.
Wasim Jaffer in Domestic Cricket
In the first part, 90’s Mumbai cricket was going through a transformation. Also, there was a galaxy of stars in Mumbai cricket, like- Sachin Tendulkar, Vinod Kambli, Sanjay Manjrekar. But they were mostly playing for India. So, new players were coming to the team.
Wasim Jaffer made his debut for Mumbai in the 1996/97 session and made an immediate impact there. He scored a triple century in his second Ranji Trophy match. That inning helped Mumbai to win the match against Saurashtra.
An elegant opener for whom hitting the ball in the air was a crime. There is noting flamboyancy in his batting. Rather he was patient, calm, and perseverant in one word, Jaffer was a very much traditional old-school opening batsman. His touch play was much similar to another Indian batsman Mohammed Azharuddin. So he was in the limelight from the start of his domestic cricket.
From March 2013, Wasim Jaffer was the highest run-scorer in Ranji Trophy, Irani Trophy. That year he completed 10000 runs in Ranji Trophy. Wasim Jaffer is the first batsman in the history of the Ranji Trophy to achieve that record. Not only that, he holds the records of the highest number of century scorers in first-class cricket.
In 2015 he moved to Vidarbha from Mumbai. And in 2018, Vidarbha won the Ranji Trophy for the first time. In the 2018-19 Ranji Trophy match against Baroda, Wasim Jaffer became the first batsman to score 11000 runs in the Ranji Trophy. In that session, he scored his 55th first-class century.
In the same session, Wasim Jaffer achieved two more records. First, he played the most number of matches in Ranji Trophy. And the second one is, he scored 19000 runs in all first-class career.
In the 2019-20 domestic session, Wasim Jaffer became the first cricketer who played 150 Ranji Trophy matches. On March 7, 2020, Jaffer retired from all formats of the game.
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Wasim Jaffer For India
Wasim Jaffer in Test Cricket
Because of his consistent performance in domestic cricket, it was just a matter of time for Wasim Jaffer to call for the Indian test team. In 2000, Jaffer was the first time call for the home series against South Africa. Jaffer was making his debut in front of his home crowd. That test match was playing in Wankhede stadium, Mumbai.
Everybody was expecting something good from Jaffer because of his performance in domestic cricket. However, Allan Donald, Shaun Pollock, Lance Klusener was too difficult for him to handle. Jaffer played only 20 balls and scored just four runs in his debut inning in test cricket. In the second inning, he played 22 balls and scored six only.
The second test at Bengaluru was a not-good show for Wasim Jaffer. In the first innings, he played 36 balls and scored 13, and in the second innings, he played 73 balls and scored 23 runs. In that series, he managed only 46 runs in four innings. It is no surprise Jaffer was dropped for the next couple of years.
In 2002 he again picked up for the West Indies tour. Jaffer had a decent performance on that tour. He scored 51 in Bridgetown and 86 in Antigua. It was enough for Jaffer to select for the tour of England in the following summer. In the first test match at Lords, Jaffer scored only one in the first innings. But he made 53 in the second innings.
In the next teat match at Nottingham, Jaffer had a very bad show. He did not open his account in the first innings and scored just five in the second innings. Wasim Jaffer dropped for the next couple of years.
Jaffer was recalled to the Test squad for the tour of Pakistan in 2005-06. He did not play in a single test. But in the next Test series against England in India, Jaffer scored his made in test century at Nagpur. In that test, Jaffer scored 81 in the first innings and 100 in the second innings. 2006-07 was a very productive year for Jaffer. He scored all his five hundred and seven fifties in a stretch of 19 test matches.
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He made his first double hundred at the Antigua against West Indies in June 2006. In the second innings, he made 212 and spent more than 500 minutes in the crease. Jaffer made his third test century against South Africa at Cape Town.
He scored 138 against Bangladesh at Dhaka. It was his fourth test century. His last century was a double ton at Eden Gardens, Kolkata. That 202 innings came against Pakistan. Jaffer played his last test match against South Africa at Kanpur in April 2008.
Wasim Jaffer in ODI
In one day of cricket, Wasim Jaffer played only two matches. Both the matches were against South Africa in 2006. He scored only ten runs and faced just 23 balls.
Wasim Jaffer in IPL
The first secession of IPL in 2008, was picked by the Royal Challengers Bangalore. He played only eight games and scored 130 runs. He had one fifty in IPL also.
India, India A, Board Presidents XI, Mumbai, Royal Challengers Bangalore, West Zone, Vidarbha
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