Monday, December 19, 2022

Rehman Ahmed was first featured on this blog in 2017

Today, having already broken the record for the youngest English test player, Rehan Ahmed took five second-innings wickets to put England in a winning position against Pakistan.

In the process, he also set back the England and Wales Cricket Board's plans to get rid off Leicestershire as a first-class county.

An ECB spokesperson responds: "And we would have gotten away with it too, if it weren't for that meddling kid."

Rehman Ahmed first featured on this blog in September 2017, when the media got excited about his abilities after he was used as a net bowler by the England team.

As I remarked at the time,

Like chess prodigies, England spin prospects get younger and younger.

And I quoted Elizabeth Ammon in The Times:
Rehan Ahmed is considered such an outstanding prospect that he has now bowled at England batsmen two years in a row. Ahmed, who is attached to Nottinghamshire and has already played for their under-17s, also helped England’s batsmen before the Lord’s Test against Pakistan last year, when he bowled Ben Stokes in the nets. 
Yesterday he was back among the finest Test players in England, holding his own comfortably. His father, Naeem, who took his son to a trial at Nottinghamshire at the age of eight, told Cricinfo: "Mushtaq Ahmed [the former England spin bowling coach] was just walking past the nets last summer and when he saw Rehan bowl, he stopped in his tracks. He came to watch and was obviously very impressed." 
I did offer warnings about what a growth spurt at puberty can do to young spin bowlers, quoting Nasser Hussain:
"I went from bowling out Graham Gooch in the indoor school with everyone watching to hitting the roof or bowling triple-bouncers in deadly silence." 
But as Rehman Ahmed has negotiated that hurdle, I shall just claim to have spotted his potential years ago.


Anonymous said...

Let's just hope he can work some of his magic for Leicestershire in 2023....

Unknown said...

If I've heard it once I've heard it a 1000 times, Strong Leicestershire = Strong England

Jonathan Calder said...

It sounds unlikely now, but I can remember two periods - the early 1970s, when I first went to watch them, and the later 1990s - when Leicestershire were about the strongest county side.