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Alimuddin pictured during Pakistan's tour of England in 1962. – Photo courtesy Boundary Books
Alimuddin pictured during Pakistan's tour of England in 1962. – Photo courtesy Boundary Books

KARACHI: Pakistan’s legendary opening batsman Alimuddin died after protracted illness, reports said on Thursday.

According to former Pakistan Test captain Mushtaq Muhammad, the 81-year-old former opener died in London. He never married in his life, Mushtaq informed state-run news agency APP.

Born in Ajmer (British India) on December 15, 1930, Alimuddin played 25 Test matches for Pakistan from 1954 to 1962, scoring 1091 runs and as well as 7275 runs in 140 first-class games.

He was the leading batsman during the 1954-55 series against India and scored 103 runs in a match at Karachi. During the disastrous 1962 tour to England, Alimuddin top-scored at Leeds with 50 and 60 runs.

In the early years, he formed a stable opening pair with little master Hanif Muhammad. In the Karachi Test of 1962, Alimuddin he hit a stroke-filled 109 against England. He was known for his solid technique and was a member of the team which defeated England at the Oval in 1954.

According to the report, he was the youngest person to have played first-class cricket, appearing for Rajasthan in the Ranji Trophy at the age of just 12 years 73 days.

“Alimuddin was my senior partner and I learnt a great deal from him,” former Pakistan captain, Hanif Muhammad, a close friend of Alim said.

“Its sad day for cricket because he served Pakistan with great deal of honour and dignity,” he recalled.

“We met last year at Lord’s, London and I enjoyed his company,” Muhammad recalled.

He said, along with elder brothers Raees Muhammad and Wazir Muhammad, they used to make trips to Junagadh to watch Alimuddin in action during Ranji Trophies matches.

“He (Alim) remained well-dressed throughout his life and was a dedicated cricketer and modest person,” he said.

Former Pakistan captain Javed Miandad paid glowing tributes Alimuddin for his services to cricket for his kindness to junior cricketers.

“He was in PIA in London and always helped fellow cricketers,” he said.

“Alim remained in cricketing circles throughout his life and used to arrange cricket matches,” Miandad said.

First-class cricketer Asif Ahmed, who played under Alimuddin recalled “Alimuddin Sahab always supported youngsters and it was under his leadership that Karachi Blues won the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy in 1962.”