A Kashmiri freelance photographer Saqib Majeed has won the 2016 Wisden–MCC Cricket Photograph of the Year competition.
Saqib’s clicked the award-winning picture at Nishat garden in Srinagar, in October last year.
Saqib is an engineer by profession and a freelance photographer since last eight years.
Saqib is the first Kashmiri and second Asian after Atul Kamble to receive the prestigious award.
Every year MCC (Melbourne Cricket Council) publishes a book titled Wisden Cricketer Almanack which includes best sports pictures from across the globe. This year’s edition has Saqib’s picture included.
“The historic Lords Cricket Ground will display my image for a year,” said a visibly happy Saqib who was chosen among 450 participants.
“It was an autumn day when I visited Nishat Garden with a friend to click some pictures. When I reached the garden, some guys were playing cricket under the shade of Chinar trees,” recalls Saqib. “I started to click the pictures for next half-an-hour.”
Saqib recalls trying different angles to get a perfect shot but ended up clicking only a few. “But I was not satisfied.”
Then Saqib found a higher spot and clicked the award-winning picture from there. “It was a top angle shot.”
After Saqib reached home filed the story for a foreign magazine along with the picture. “Later I came to know that the picture was picked by The Guardian and published,” said Saqib. “Then it was Times of London that published the photograph followed by many newspapers in London.”
Saqib is passionate about photography since childhood. “But unfortunately my family didn’t allow me to study photography,” he rues.
“My heart was never in engineering. I just did it for sake of my parents,” said Saqib.
However, they relented and gave him permission to continue photography provided he completes his engineering.
Saqib believes a good photographer needs both resources and an eye to get a perfect shot.
“I am very thankful to my family, friends and The Counselor Magazine who always encouraged,” said Saqib.