Attacking middle-order batsman, occasional bowler, excellent cover point fielder, competent wicketkeeper, commercial manager, committee member, vice president and all-round cult hero, Sheikh Basharat Hassan has fulfilled many roles for his adopted county since his arrival in England in 1966.
Born on 24 March 1944 in Nairobi, Basher was an accomplished club cricketer in his native Kenya whose talent reached a wider audience when he made his First-Class debut for an East African Invitation XI against the touring MCC in 1963.
Making his Notts debut against Oxford University in 1966, his early appearances were restricted by the need for residential qualification and the limit on overseas players – particular when Gary Sobers joined the county.
Basher had to wait until 1969 before he became a regular first team player, but having established his place in the side he was an ever-present for three seasons and reached 1,000 runs in a campaign for the first time in 1970. He reached this milestone in four other seasons and scored fifteen First-Class centuries with a top score of 182 not out against Gloucestershire in 1977.
Playing a vital role in the 1981 Championship-winning side (when he finished third in Notts’ batting averages), Basher’s versatility also made him a key player in limited-overs cricket.
He was the first Notts batsman to reach 5,000 runs in the Sunday League, and ended his career with 6,842 List A runs and a highest score of 120 not out against Warwickshire in 1981.
In his final season, Basher was twelfth man for England in an Ashes Test at Trent Bridge, and he became a First-Class umpire for a few seasons after he retired.
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