Umaid Asif was banned for a year on doping charges in 2014. He was the best bowler in National Twenty20 last year but he was not even taken by any franchise, not even as a 21st player.
That hurt the 33-year-old fast bowler from Sialkot. He took Twitter to show his frustration, ranting that he was the best bowler in Twenty20 but no one found him able enough to feature in the PSL.
But the new year brought happiness for the Sialkot pacer as he was inducted into defending champions Peshwara Zalmi’s squad as a cover up for injured fast bowler Hasan Ali.
Umaid grabbed the chance with both hands and on Saturday took an amazing 4-23 in his incisive four-over spell to lead Peshawar Zalmi’s 34-run win over Islamabad United.
“That was a frustration of not being picked,” Umaid said after his man of the match showing. “The doing ban was a set back for my career but I did not lose heart and fought hard. Today’s performance showed that I had worked hard so it paid off.”
Umaid had been performing well in the domestic season since making his debut in 2009. He had been a regular feature for Sialkot who held the record for most Twenty20 titles in Pakistan.
His career was jolted in 2014.
Pakistan Cricket Board’s anti-doping tribunal after testing positive for a prohibited substance. The ban has been deemed to have commenced from January 23 in 2014.
Umaid’s urine sample was collected on November 29 in Lahore that year when he was representing Khan Research Laboratories against State Bank in the Faysal Bank T-20 Cup.
Asked why he got a chance so late in his career, Umaid said: “Can’t say that I got a chance very late but when it came my way I have given the performance. My aim has always been to play for Pakistan and for that I will work hard. The rest is destiny.”
Umaid said he came to Lahore for studies.
“My parents sent me to Lahore for studies but there I developed an interest for cricket and started playing club cricket. Then I joined domestic circuit and played for Sialkot as well. I have been working well and hope that my day will come.”