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Biographies of Pakistan's 17-man England tour squad

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    Biographies of Pakistan's 17-man England tour squad

    Following are brief biographies of Pakistan's cricket squad for the tour to England starting May 2:

    WAQAR YOUNIS. Born: Nov 16 1971. Captain. Right-arm fast bowler. 319 wickets in 71 tests since 1989. Lost a yard in pace but is still a master of reverse swinging yorker. Experienced in English conditions, having represented Surrey and Glamorgan. Took 22 wickets in five tests in England in 1992 and 16 in three in 1996. Determined to unite the team and avenge the home series defeat to England last year.

    INZAMAM-UL-HAQ. Born: March 3 1970. Vice-captain. Right-hand bat. Just short of 5,000 test runs. The backbone of the batting because of his consistency. A huge man with soft hands, his fitness and running between the wickets have been his weaknesses since his debut nine years ago. He hit 142 in Karachi last year while making 303 runs in five innings against England.

    ABDUR RAZZAQ. Born: Dec 2 1979. Right-arm fast medium bowler, right-hand bat. A promising all-rounder although his test batting average of 22.41 and bowling of 41.14 does not reflect his talent. During 1999 World Cup, he batted at three while taking 13 wickets.

    AZHAR MAHMOOD. Born: Feb 28 1975. Right-arm fast medium bowler, Right-hand bat. Second bowling all-rounder in the team. Has scored three centuries against South Africa, including one on his test debut in 1997. Has recently struggled with back trouble.

    FAISAL IQBAL. Born: Dec 30 1981. Right-hand bat, right-arm medium fast bowler. Nephew of Javed Miandad who showed temperament and technique in his debut series against New Zealand last month.

    IMRAN FARHAT. Born: May 20 1982. Left-hand bat, right-arm spinner. Showed flashes of talent in his debut series against New Zealand but prone to throw away good starts with poor stroke selection or over-exuberance. Rated as the team's most naturally talented batsman by Geoffrey Boycott during his 15-day coaching stint at Lahore's National Cricket Academy in February.

    MOHAMMAD SAMI. Born: Feb 24 1981. Right-arm fast bowler. Latest pace bowling discovery, quick through the air and off the pitch. Selected after just one domestic tournament. Clocked 142 kph in the two tests he played in New Zealand last month, which included a spell of five wickets for six runs in Auckland. Bowls off a short run-up but open-chested, so struggles to move the ball away. Expected to share new ball with Shoaib Akhtar and Younis.

    MOHAMMAD WASIM. Born: Aug 8 1977. Right-hand bat, leg-spinner. Burst on to international scene with a century on debut against New Zealand in 1996. But, seen as a slow starter, failed to establish himself in the team. Returns after 13 months. Often fails to use his feet, vulnerable to lbw decisions.

    MUSHTAQ AHMED. Born: June 28 1970. Leg-spinner, useful lower-order bat. Once Shane Warne's greatest rival, the baby-faced bowler has struggled in recent season after his high-point during three tests against Australia and New Zealand in 1995-96, when he captured 28 wickets. In 2000 managed only 10 wickets at 66.60 but earns selection because of his experience with English county Somerset.

    RASHID LATIF. Born: Oct 14 1968. Wicketkeeper, right-hand bat. Winning half-century against England at The Oval in 1992 but retired in 1994-95 after making betting and match-fixing allegations against the team. Returned after three months. Toured England in 1996 but lost out to Moin Khan, returned as captain for the 1997-98 tours to South Africa and Zimbabwe before another three-year hiatus. Returns after Moin Khan's surprise axing.

    SAEED ANWAR. Born: Sept 6 1968. Left-hand opening bat. Fine timer of the ball and accomplished in both tests and one-dayers, in which he holds the world record innings of 194. A natural stroke-maker, has a tendency of flashing outside the off stump. Lately struggled with knee injuries. Missed the last test series against New Zealand through injury.

    SALIM ELAHI. Born: Nov 21 1976. Right-hand bat, right-arm off-spinner. Seen as a player for the future, still struggling to establish himself in the batting line-up. Made 221 runs in five innings against England last year. A good cutter and puller but questions remain over his defence. Hoping to open with Anwar.

    SAQLAIN MUSHTAQ. Born: Dec 29 1976. Off-spinner, stubborn lower-order batsman. His mystery ball, a ``slider'' which drifts away, continues to mesmerise the best. Has fallen out of favour with administrators and was nearly released from the test series in New Zealand. Test best of 8-164 came against England at Lahore last year. 145 wickets in 34 tests. Showed a liking for English conditions with Surrey.

    SHOAIB AKHTAR. Born: Aug 13 1975. Right-arm fast bowler. Relishes his flamboyant image. Just back from injury and from remedial work on his action after being reported -- and cleared -- for throwing for a second time. Dubbed the ``Rawalpindi Express,'' rivals Australian Brett Lee for the title of the world's quickest bowler. Clocked 154 kph in Australia in 1999. Failed to complete tours to New Zealand and West Indies and has not played competitively since February.

    WASIM AKRAM. Born: June 3 1966. Left-arm fast bowler, left-hand bat. One of the greats, with 409 test wickets, 440 one-day wickets, 2,815 test runs and 3,279 one-day runs. Reputation was clouded, however, by allegations of involvement with match-fixing. Denied the claims but was dropped until cleared by national board. Not as quick as in his heyday but still swings the ball both ways and produces a quicker ball without changing his action. Two wickets at 61.5 in two tests against England last year. Rib injury shortened tour to New Zealand. Has toured England four times and played for more than a decade with Lancashire.

    YOUNIS KHAN. Born: Nov 29 1977. Right-arm bat, leg-spinner. Struck a century on debut and got the second in his ninth test against Sri Lanka last year before being dropped for the home series against England. Celebrated recall with 92 and 149 against New Zealand at Auckland. Likes to play off the front foot but is vulnerable to the away-swinger. Fine fielder and excels in the slips.

    YOUSUF YOUHANA. Born: Aug 27 1974. Right-hand bat. As technically correct as he is graceful, averages 42.66 in tests. One of Javed Miandad's proteges. Scored 342 against England last year, with two centuries in three tests. Continued his good form in New Zealand where he had an aggregate of 301 runs, with a double century in the drawn Christchurch test.

    Thanx for sharing ehsan