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Ashar Zaidi

Ashar Zaidi
Ashar Zaidi
©Nigel Stockley
Date of birth: 13th July 1981
Place of birth: Karachi, Sind, Pakistan
Current club:
Batting style:
Left handed middle order
Bowling style:
Left arm medium pace/spin

Profile:

Accrington signed Pakistani all rounder Ashar Zaidi as their professional for 2011 and retained him for 2012 and 2013 after two successful seasons that saw Accrington win the Holland Cup as league runners up.

Ashar Zaidi's epic 2013 season finally came to an end after 46 matches, 2421 runs, 136 wickets and 32 catches in five and a half action packed months.

Little could he have imagined that after beginning the season at a chilly Chatburn Road playing for Clitheroe against Great Harwood in mid April that his season would end playing in the Sussex team that beat new County Champions Durham after smashing a host of records in Accrington's march to the Lancashire League title. Sussex subsequently signed Ashar on a two year contract after he initially signed as professional for Church for 2014.

Silverware came in his second match of the season when Accrington won the Ron Singleton Colne Trophy at Lowerhouse with Ash racing from the field, stump in hand, in triumph.

The following day Accrington's long march to the title began with an opening day win over Haslingden with Ash hitting 39 and taking 5-44.

Ash's first century of the season was an unbeaten 113 with 5-8 from 9 overs thrown in as his second sub pro stint of the season ended in another comprehensive victory for Flixton over Darcy Lever.

His first century of the season for Accrington came the following week against Rawtenstall in a 3rd wicket stand of 166 with Aijaz Shah (115 not out).

The Northern Premier League was Ash's next stop with 64 in Lancaster's win at Kendal. He smashed 170 in his next sub pro outing for Middleton in the Central Lancashire League sides win over Milnrow. The next day a solid 83 coupled with 5-38 saw Accrington to victory in their derby match at Church.

Ash then smashed 32 off Rishton's Garth Wyse the following Friday in a comprehensive 20/20 win. After a rare day off Ash hit 121 against Burnley on Sunday.

In early August he passed 1,000 runs in the Lancashire League during his century against Todmorden.

It was then revealed that he would be leaving Accrington at the end of the season. How would this news affect Ash?

The answer came in no uncertain fashion six days later at Haslingden where he played his best innings of the season, an unbeaten 138 to bring the title within grasp. Ash's century was also a club record fourth of the season.

Eight days later Accrington sealed the championship in some style, beating outgoing champions Lowerhouse with Ash making 43 and taking 3-49.

Meanwhile Ash had approached all 18 counties to offer his services. Sussex were looking for a replacement for Monty Panesar after releasing the slow left armer and Ash seemed to fit the bill.

His trial in the seconds couldn't have gone better with an unbeaten 192 and 6-24 in the match against Durham to earn a County Championship debut against Yorkshire.

First though came the small matter of Bobby Simpson's 54 year-old batting aggregate of 1444 runs. Ash needed 90 from the final match at Colne.

Needing 40 for the record with just 48 needed for victory, Ash launched a ferocious assault on Colne's inexperienced bowlers to snatch the record in dramatic fashion. Ash ended the season as the league's leading run scorer with 1446 runs at 68.9 and the leading wicket taker with 79at 13.6, the first player to achieve this since Roger Harper in 1994.

Next up was Ash's County championship debut and he didn't disappoint taking 4-57 to hit the national headlines.

And finally he made 45 and then took 2-44 in Sussex's 6 wicket win over new champions Durham to leave his new club Church sweating with the chance of a contract with a county a possibility.

Ashar was a revelation with his zest for runs and wickets in his first season. Zaidi began with a match winning bowling performance of 7-42 whilst bowling medium pace in the opening match against Rishton in the absence of David Ormerod, but most of his 68 wickets at 15.2 were taken whilst bowling slow left arm spin. His contrasting batting styles were also evident early on with his 174 at Rawtenstall made in free flowing style whilst his unbeaten 72 against Todmorden the previous day was made with the utmost responsibility. In all he scored 1015 runs at 59.7 with two centuries and eight half centuries and he also snapped up 17 catches, mostly off his own bowling. Accrington made a league record 386-6 at Rawtenstall on May 1st with Zaidi putting on a league record 5th wicket stand of 247 with Lloyd, who made 112. Zaidi's 174 was the highest innings of the season and his other century was the first by an Accrington player at Ramsbottom.

Zaidi's second season at Accrington saw more success with the ball and less with the bat in a cold damp summer that again saw Accrington finish as runners up to Lowerhouse. He hit 625 runs at 28.4 with two centuries and two half centuries. With the ball. Zaidi took 83 wickets at 10.9, including ten five wicket hauls. He also took 15 catches.

The left hander played for Wood Lane in the North Staffordshire and South Cheshire Premier League in 2009 and 2010, hitting 622 runs at 38.9 and taking 24 wickets at 22.0 in league matches.

Ashar has scored 5176 runs at 38.3 with a highest score of 202 one of his 11 First-class centuries since his debut in 1999. He has taken 49 wickets at 30.4 and can bowl either left arm medium pace or spin.

His full name is Syed Ashar Ahmed Zaidi and his CV shows his First-class clubs as Islamabad; Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited ; Rawalpindi; Khan Research Laboratories; Federal Areas; Islamabad; Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited; Rawalpindi; Rawalpindi Rams; Islamabad Leopards and; Khan Research Laboratories. He also has considerable experience in club cricket having appeared in the Northern League, Liverpool and District Premier League and also for Edenfield in a 20/20 game against Ramsbottom in 2009.

Ashar is a UK resident and he was Accrington's second Pakistani professional following Mohsin Khan who was paid man in 1979 and 1980.

List of matches played on database

LANCASHIRE LEAGUE RECORD

Club
Season
Inns
N.O
H.S.
Runs
Av
Overs
Mdns
Runs
Wkts
Av
Accrington
2011
22
5
174
1015
59.7
326.2
40
1035
68
15.2
Accrington
2012
23
1
101
625
28.4
365
82
906
83
10.9
Accrington 2013 26 5 138* 1446 68.8   340.5 38 1071 79 13.5
71
11
174
3086
51.4
1032.1
160
3012
230
13.1

The Club