It took until the final day of the final Test but Pakistan at last managed a repeat of England’s 2012 nightmare against spin. Yasir Shah took the first and last wickets as Pakistan skipped home by a 127-run margin for a 2-0 win that has lifted them to No. 2 in the ICC Test rankings.

The story of Pakistan’s spinners is of quality rather than quantity. Zulfiqar Ahmed, an offspinner, was the country’s first regular spinner and the first of his kind to win them a Test; 11 cheap wickets at the National Stadium in Karachi in 1955 brought Pakistan their first home Test win.The tradition is also a significant one with broader ripples. At a time, for example, when legspin had all but disappeared, Pakistan was captained by two,Intikhab Alam and Mushtaq Mohammad. Not long after came Abdul Qadir, and though he didn’t make the art as fashionable as did Shane Warne later, he stands at ground zero of the revival. With Mushtaq Ahmed and Danish Kaneria, Pakistan can truly claim to have done their bit and then some to keep alive cricket’s most compelling skill.

“Little is not little, enough is not enough.”

–SaqlainMushtaq delivers a doorsa when asked whether his four-month
stint as Bangladesh’s spin-bowling consultant would be time
enough for the players to benefit, Aug 14, 2012.