Asif Iqbal © Getty Images (file photo)
Asif Iqbal © Getty Images (file photo)

Former Pakistan captain Asif Iqbal, currently settled in England, voiced that the current Indian side is the greatest ever to have toured England. “I honestly believe that this Indian team, with [Virat] Kohli and [Ravi] Shastri at the helm is probably the best ever to visit England,” Asif told Bipin Dani of The Daily Observer. ”The way India and England played the 1,000th England Test, both teams made it a memorable one and the best advert for the promotion of Test cricket”.

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Asif added that “absolutely brilliant performances were shown by both teams and in the end the team played better won the Test as last.

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“Indian bowling and catching was superb and Kohli needed some support from his talented line up. His was a solo effort and rarely you win Test matches single-handed [sic]. Having said that, the first Test has shown that it is going to be a enjoyable and memorable series irrespective of which team wins it.”

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Born in Hyderabad, Asif had played four matches for Hyderabad in the Ranji Trophy before moving to Pakistan. He later had a long stint with Kent, from 1968 to 1982. He led Pakistan in his farewell series, in India in 1979-80, and was the driving force behind the advent of cricket in Sharjah. His numbers in England — 480 runs at 36.92 and 16 wickets at 26.25 from 9 Tests — make impressive reading. His uncle Ghulam Ahmed had captained India in the 1950s.