'Mystery' spinner Abrar Ahmed's father upbeat after spectacular show

Pakistan spinner Abrar Ahmed grabbed seven wickets in his Test debut against England

KARACHI: Pakistan spinner Abrar Ahmed's father was on cloud nine after his son cast a spell over England Friday, grabbing seven wickets and helping his side dismiss the tourists on day one of the second Test in Multan.

Noor Islam, the father of Multan Test hero Abrar Ahmed, said today was the second-most happiest day of his life.

"We are too happy today. The first happiness was when Abrar memorised Quran and this was the second-biggest happiness for us as he bagged seven wickets on his debut against England in the Multan Test," said the proud father.

Test debutant Abrar stunned England's batters — who were on song in the first Test where they amassed 657 runs in the first innings. The mystery spinner rattled England's batting in the first session on day 1 of the second Test, taking five wickets before Lunch.

Later on, the right-arm magician did wonders for Pakistan and bagged seven wickets overall to help the hosts bowl out in-form England for 281 runs.

Islam lauded Abrar and said he was always very obedient and intelligent.

"He was a very obedient and intelligent child. He grew up in a religious environment," said Islam while lamenting about the lack of facilities in Abrar's childhood ground where a lot of other children now dream of becoming professional cricketers.

A playground just opposite Abrar's home saw this young star rising and dreaming to become a professional cricketer.

"Abrar and we used to play here together," the cricketer's friends — who had gathered around Abrar's home — told GeoSuper.tv.

"We are very happy to see our friend representing Pakistan. We hope to see him making the country proud," they said.

Abrar, the youngest of five brothers living in a small area of Jahangir Road, made his First-Class (FC) debut from Sindh in 2020.

The 24-year-old prodigy took 76 wickets in 14 FC matches before making his Test debut today. He was recently named best bowler in Quaid-e-Azam Trophy 2022-23 for taking the most 43 wickets.

Following his domestic performance, Abrar's brother Amjad Ahmed was too confident for him to play for Pakistan one day.

"His domestic performance made me realise his strengths. I was confident that one day he will play for Pakistan," he said.

"Being his brother, I am very happy and proud. We all now want him to excel and play for Pakistan everywhere," he added.

Abrar became the 13th Pakistani bowler to bag a five-wicket haul on his Test debut. The youngster laid down a solid foundation for Pakistan to win the second Test after a bitter defeat in Rawalpindi. 

Thumbnail image: Pakistan's Abrar Ahmed reacts during the first day of the second cricket Test match between Pakistan and England at the Multan Cricket Stadium in Multan on December 9, 2022. — AFP