Wasim Bari is a former Pakistani cricketer, who was born on 23 March 1948 in Karachi, Sindh district of Pakistan. Considered to be one of the best wicket-keepers of Asia, Bari has played 81 Tests.
He was also a competent lower order batsman, scoring 1,366 runs in 112 innings.
Early Career and Debut
Bari first came into light when the England Under-25 team opinionated that he was the best South Asian keeper till date.
Wasim made his Test debut against England at Lord's on July 27, 1967. He caught Colin Milburn and Ken Harrington in the first innings and had his first stumping of his career with Brian Close.
His one-day international (ODI) debut was against New Zealand on 11 February, 1973, with Bari getting three catches in the match.
Rise to Glory
After two quiet Tests at Edgbaston and Lord’s, Bari came into his elements at Headingley. Wasim Bari had Alan Knott as his wicket keeping counterpart in the match against England, who is widely considered as the best wicket-keeper of the era.
Wasim never looked second best as he bagged eight wickets from both the innings, equaling the world-record of eight wickets in a Test.
Bari had become the first-choice wicket keeper of the Pakistan side by now. He was dissuaded by the then Pakistan captain Imran Khan to not quit international cricket and Bari showed he could handle pace bowlers, taking 36 catches off Imran and 35 more off Sarfraz — which accounted for close to a third of his career dismissals.
In the Melbourne Test of 1976-77, Bari stumped Doug Walters and Gary Gilmour in the first innings, and Rick McCosker and Rod Marsh in the second, being only the eighth wicket-keeper to effect four stumpings in a Test.
Retirement and Records
Wasim Bari hanged up his boots in 1984 but had left his mark on world cricket by then. Bari is by far the best wicket-keeper Pakistan has ever produced.
He has played 81 Tests with 201 catches and 27 stumpings and at the time of his retirement, he had played more Tests than any other Pakistani cricketer.
Wasim Bari was awarded the Life Achievement Award by Pakistan Cricket Board in 1997 to commemorate the country’s fifty years of Independence.