Friday, 28 October 2016, 12:46pm
5 things you might not know about Zafar Ansari
The slow left-armer replaces Gareth Batty, his captain at Surrey, in the line-up as England look to round off their tour of Bangladesh with a 2-0 Test series victory.
Here, Press Association Sport's David Charlesworth looks at five things you might not know about the 24-year-old.
1. The Ansaris
Ansari's father hails from Lahore, Pakistan, and moved to Britain as a teenager due to his father's commitment to the British Army. Khizar Ansari was awarded an OBE in 2002 for his work in race and ethnic relations. Both of Ansari's parents are academics while his brother has just finished his PhD.
2. Chip off the old block
Ansari achieved a double first in politics and sociology at Cambridge University while his Masters subject on civil rights in the United States has seen him recently complete a 40,000-word dissertation, leaving him free to concentrate on the day job for a while. If he wasn't a cricketer then he says he would have attempted his PhD. He added: "I'm interested in law, certain aspects of it at least, so maybe I would be going down that path. But fortunately I haven't had to think about it too much."
3. First wicket
Ansari marked his first-class bow for Cambridge MCCU against Essex in 2011 by bowling his future England skipper Alastair Cook. If that sounds like a dream debut then the reality is altogether different. Ansari reflected: "I bowled 30-odd overs without taking a wicket and then he tried to reverse sweep me and dragged it on. It wasn't a magical moment really. I don't think he had a clue who I was, I was just some ropey university spin bowler."
4. Second wicket
Ansari had to wait until his third first-class match before taking his next wicket, but it was another big fish as future Surrey team-mate Kevin Pietersen was snared bat-pad. Pietersen's travails against spin were well-known on both the domestic and international circuit although it was still a surprise for him to be dismissed by a 19-year-old rookie, who went on to take his first five-for. If that wasn't bad enough for Surrey captain Pietersen, it got worse a couple of days later as he presided over a 10-wicket mauling by Cambridge MCCU.
5. Zafar's heroes
While he has been primarily included for his bowling, Ansari is more than capable with the bat having registered three first-class hundreds. As a left-handed bowler and batsman, his cricketing idols are two men who were also left-hand dominant. He said: "The guys who are my heroes are not guys I play like. So Garry Sobers, because he is an all-rounder and I thought he was amazing, and Wasim Akram, a Pakistan left-hander."
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Zafar Ansari is more than capable with the bat having registered three first-class hundreds in 66 matches