Abdul Azeem in his prime.

Abdul Azeem in his prime.
| Photo Credit: The Hindu Archives

HYDERABAD: Hyderabad’s Abdul Azeem, one of the finest openers in domestic cricket, passed away here on Tuesday. Azeem, who was on dialysis for quite some time, was 62 and is survived by wife and two daughters.

Widely acknowledged as one of those batters in the 80s and 90s who re-defined the attitude of an opener with blazing knocks akin to the T20 innings of the contemporary era, Azeem had to his credit a triple century against Tamil Nadu in the 1986 Ranji season.

A gentleman cricketer who never compromised with the rules of the game on and off the field as was evident when he once quit the HCA selector’s post when he felt the procedures were not being followed in picking the State squads.

An affable character, giving a lot of fun moments to his friends and fellow cricketers, Azeem was also coach of the Hyderabad Ranji team with Noel David as his deputy.

In a career spanning 73 first-class games between 1980-95, the dashing opener scored 4644 runs and had 12 centuries and 18 fifties to his name.

Former BCCI president N. Shivlal Yadav informed The Hindu that it was a terrible personal loss. “Azeem was such a brilliant cricketer who never got his due at the highest level. A very sincere player who always played for the team’s cause. It is a huge loss to Hyderabad cricket.”

Former India captain Mohd Azharuddin, Test stars Arshad Ayub, former HCA secretaries Seshadri Venkateshwaran, K. John Manoj and ex-Ranji cricketer and Azeem’s teammate Vanka Pratap expressed shock even while recalling Azeem’s contribution to cricket.

See also  "Lord Rinku Saved The Day": Kolkata Knight Riders Teammate's Ultimate Tribute To Rinku Singh After Gujarat Titans Win | Cricket News