In the air and Ramiz Raja takes it Pakistan has won the World Cup. These words of Richie Benaud are forever tucked in the minds of the Pakistani fans because, on that day, the men in green were crowned champions of the ICC Cricket World Cup in 1992.
Against Pakistan in the finals, Richard Illingworth of England was caught by Ramiz Raja off Imran Khan’s bowling and that wicket gave Pakistan its first World Cup title.
Early Life and Career:
Ramiz Hasan Raja was born in a Rajput Punjabi family in Faisalabad on the 14th of August in 1962. Ramiz was coincidently born on the Independence Day of Pakistan. It was perhaps an indication of something big coming up in his life. Ramiz’s family members from his wife’s side are from India as his mother in law is from Delhi and his father in law hails from Kamal city of Haryana.
Growing up as a kid, Ramiz developed a love for the game in an early age and started playing cricket in the streets with his friends. In one of his interviews, Ramiz said that he was a very bright student and his parents were very supportive in every aspect.
Ramiz made his first-class debut in 1978. He is one of the very few players in the country who were very consistent run-scorers in first-class cricket.
Ramiz has scored over 9000 runs in List A cricket whereas his first-class career has over 10,000 runs under his belt. Ramiz was called up to the national side against England in 1984 when he made his Test debut. However, he failed in both the innings and could only score 1 run in each of his innings.
Ramiz played his first Test match against England in 1984 but he was very young and raw for the international level at that time.
After failing badly in his debut Test match, Ramiz lost his place in the side and went back to further nurture his skills at the domestic level. Soon, many of the top players in the national side retired and Ramiz Raja was called back to the national side because of his massive first-class experience.
After that, there was no looking back as Ramiz Raja played for almost 13 years in international cricket and appeared in 57 Test matches for Pakistan. He scored two centuries in his entire Test career whilst he has an average of 31.83.
Ramiz’s One-Day International career numbers are relatively better compared to his Test match stats. In 198 ODIs, Ramiz Raja scored 9 centuries. He was part of the team that reached the semi-finals of the 1987 ICC Cricket World Cup.
Raja’s golden years in cricket came when he toured with the men in green to Australia for the ICC Cricket World Cup in 1992. It was perhaps the dream tour for Ramiz Raja as he performed brilliantly with the bat for Pakistan scoring two centuries in the main event.
He also scored a hundred against New Zealand at a time when the Kiwis were going unbeatable in the tournament. About his performance in the ICC Cricket World Cup in 1992, Ramiz Raja said that it was the captaincy of Imran Khan that used to take the best out of every player.
“The Captain Imran Khan used to motivate us all the time during that World Cup and his leadership qualities were enough for each and every player to perform to the best of his potential,” said Ramiz Raja during an interview.
Ramiz is one of the few players to have scored over 10,000 first-class runs in Pakistan. Ramiz Raja appeared in 3 consecutive ICC Cricket World Cups for Pakistan in 1987, 1992 and 1996. Ramiz Raja took the last catch at the ICC Cricket World Cup in 1992 off Imran Khan’s bowling hence achieving the greatest honor.
Ramiz Raja had a career ODI batting average of 32 and his highest score in ODIs is 119*. Ramiz Hasan Raja scored 5841 runs in ODIs whilst he scored 2833 Test with an average of 31.83. He played for Pakistan in 198 ODIs and 57 Test matches.
Commentary and YouTube Channel:
Ramiz Hasan Raja is perhaps known best for his commentary skills as he joined the team of Sky Sports, Ten Sports and other sports platforms as a full-time commentator soon after his retirement.
He’s currently one of the most active commentators in World Cricket and is doing commentary in almost every match of Pakistan and also in the ICC events. He is also a regular member of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) commentary team.
Ramiz Raja recently launched his YouTube Channel in the name of ‘Ramiz Speaks’ and he is going really well with his YouTube career as well. Ramiz has over 1 million subscribers on YouTube and he’s certainly gaining the audiences’ attention with his critical analysis and match reports.