Former India pacer Munaf Patel rolls back the years in T10 League

Ajit Vijaykumar 11:53 22/11/2018
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Former Indian pacer Munaf Patel.

Some of you might not remember that former India international fast bowler Munaf Patel is a World Cup winner.

The lanky pacer was the unsung hero as India lifted the 2011 World Cup crown by defeating Sri Lanka in the final. He picked up 11 wickets from eight matches in that edition of the 50-over showpiece event.

However, 2011 turned out to be a bad year for Munaf as it was the last year he represented India in international cricket. For someone who started off as one of the fastest bowlers ever produced by India, the end was equally swift.

But Munaf waited patiently for his next chance, playing on the domestic circuit and in the IPL. But the Gujarat pacer’s windows of opportunity began to shrink. He retired from all forms of cricket this month, stating that age had caught up with his 35-year-old body.

“There is no regret. After all, the cricketers I played with have retired. Only (MS) Dhoni is left. So, there is no sadness as such,” Munaf told the Indian Express while announcing his retirement.

But it hasn’t meant the end of cricketing life for Munaf. The lanky quick is one of eight Indian players playing in the second edition of the T10 League in the UAE and he got things rolling in the first match of the tournament in Sharjah on Wednesday with a superb bowling effort.

The right arm quick took 3-20 from two overs while bowling for Rajputs, including the wickets of Sindhis batsmen Anton Devcich, Shane Watson and Ben Cutting. He helped restrict Sindhis to 94-6 in 10 overs before opener Mohammad Shahzad smashed the Sindhis bowling to bits with 74 off just 16 balls to secure victory in four overs.

All three batsmen are regular fixtures in T20 cricket and getting their scalps is no mean feat for a fast bowler who last played competitive cricket in the 2017 IPL. But it seems there is enough natural ability left in Munaf to trouble a few batsmen in short formats.

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