A Look Back at Hassan Ali’s Fantastic Return

When Hassan Ali burst into the cricket’s collective consciousness, it seemed Pakistan had found the perfect pacer. And it was true. Hassan proved himself to be on top of every bowling opportunity he got. He rose to true fame in the Champions Trophy 2017, taking thirteen wickets. He was the only player to take wickets in double digits.

In 2018, something was off about him. His performance decreased significantly. In late April 2019, Hassan was diagnosed with a lower back injury. He went through extensive rehabilitation only to land himself in another injury. His come-back looked grim. He missed many national commitments during 2019-2020. Hassan Ali had left a void in the team.

Hassan Ali’s Comeback

Despite missing out on a large chunk of cricket in 2020, Hassan still had a lot of cricket left in him. There was no way he was leaving cricket. After months and months of extensive rehab, Hassan made his way back into the team. His first assignment was the Quaid-e-Azam trophy 2020-2021.

Read: Central contract 2021-22: PCB promotes Hassan Ali

Quaid-e-Azam Trophy 2020-2021

The Quaid-e-Azam trophy marked the ace bowler’s comeback. And it was a brilliant comeback. 

Hassan took a massive 43 wickets in 17 innings and had an economy of 3.30. He achieved this feat despite suffering another injury and missing out on the third phase of the tournament.

The bowler had reserved a star-studded performance for the last test. In the final between Central Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Hasan played like a champion all-rounder. He took a five-wicket haul and then went on to score 106 on just sixty-one balls. The match was drawn, but Hasan won a come-back in the national squad.

Hassan Ali’s First International Assignment after Comeback

Hassan Ali in Test

In January 2021, South Africa returned to play two tests and three T20I after a gap of fourteen years.  It was Hassan’s first test series with the national team. Hasan continued his remarkable form from the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy to help Pakistan clean sweep South Africa.

In the second test, Hassan took ten crucial wickets to seal the deal for Pakistan. His five-wicket haul in both innings helped Pakistan raise the test trophy and rise on the ICC Test Championship ranking.

Hassan Ali’s Come-Back in PSL 2021

After a somewhat dull performance in PSL 2020, Hassan Ali was ready to make a come-back with a bang. But this time, in colors of red. Islamabad United picked Hassan Ali for PSL 2021, and he did not disappoint. Hassan Ali was the highest wicket-taker for United. He took 13 wickets in 10 innings and had an economy of 6.75.

You can also read: All Teams Finalized Players for PSL 7

Pakistan Tour of South Africa

Pakistan toured South Africa in April 2021 for four T20Is and three ODIs. The in-form Ali proved very helpful for Pakistan in the T20Is. 

Ali took seven wickets for Pakistan in the four T20I innings. He was the highest wicket-taker for Pakistan in the T20I series.

Hassan Gleam in Pakistan Tour of Zimbabwe

From April 21 to May 10, 2021, Pakistan tour Zimbabwe.

In the T20I series, he played only one inning. And in that very inning, he performed like a star. Hassan made the brilliant figures of 4/18 and helped Pakistan sail towards victory.

Then began the test series, and as usual, Ali was fantastic. He played career-best innings to secure fourteen wickets with the best economy of 2.48. His best bowling inning of 5/27 provided massive aid to Pakistan in winning the test series. 

Not only this, the phenomenal performance improved his ICC ranking as well. He advanced six places to be ranked fourteenth in ICC test bowling rankings.

Pakistan Tour of England

They toured England from July 8th to July 20th for three ODIs and three T20Is.

Hassan Ali was brilliant in the 2nd ODI against England. He took 5/51 and kept Pakistan’s hopes up for the win. Unfortunately, Pakistan could not chase 246 and lost the series.

Pakistan Tour of West Indies

The T20I series between Pakistan and West Indies was mainly washed out by rain. In what little play happened, Hassan Ali was the leading wicket-taker for Pakistan. His BBI for the tournament was 2/11 and had an economy of 6.11.

The two test match series was a draw. Hassan took four wickets for Pakistan in the first test (total 6), but they could not finish in the victory.

Hassan in National T20I Cup

Central Punjab had some quality bowlers in National T20I Cup 2020, and as usual, Hassan was one of them.

The leader took 11 wickets for Central Punjab (CP). Hassan’s 4/24 is his best bowling figure of the tournament. This came in the match between Central Punjab v Southern Punjab (SP). Hassan’s bowling restricted SP to 119. CP sailed through cruised to the victory with ease, achieving the target in the 18th over.

Hassan Ali in T20 World Cup

Hassan Ali in World Cup

Even though he didn’t have the best World Cup campaign, he was crucial at many stages. Hassan successfully took critical wickets at the gravest moments of the match.

Hasan took five wickets in the six World Cup matches. In the match between Pakistan and India, he took two big fishes; Yadav and Jadeja.

His most memorable moment was the bulls-eye run-out in the match between Pakistan and New Zealand. Kane Williamson was on the pitch was hitting Pakistan left, right, and center. Hassan Ali took advantage of an untimed run and ran Williamson out. The game changed entirely after that.

Hasan Shines in Bangladesh

After the World Cup campaign, the Pakistan team went on a tour of Bangladesh. Three T20Is and two test matches were played. Hassan Ali proved his come-back once again in the tour.

He played one T20 and was brilliant. He took three wickets, conceded twenty-two runs, and had an economy of 7.33.

His super-form was seen in the first test against Bangladesh. Hassan took seven wickets, and his brilliant 5/51 provided much support to the Pakistan side. Pakistan won the first test as a result. 

With his remarkable come-back, Ali proved how much the team needs his pace and performance. He is improving every day. Hopefully, he will continue his outstanding form and continue to take wickets for the team

Hassan Ali wickets across formats in 2021

Test ODIsT20IsTotal in 2021
Overs (balls)212.3 (1,275)32.2 (194)59.4 (358)304.3 (1,827)
Strike Rate31.027.714.325.03
5 wicket hauls 5106
Best Bowling Innings5-275-514-185-27
Best Bowling Match10-1145-514-1810-114

Also Read: Report Card: Pakistan Test Cricket in 2021

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