The other Irfan Pathan -
11/2/2016 9:49:25 AM
Irfan Shafi Pathan represented Baroda from 1999-00 to 2008-09
spot Irfan and Yusuf Pathan's house in Vadodara wouldn't take much
trouble. It is a landmark in itself, situated amidst many other smaller
and less grand independent houses. Opposite their bungalow, goes a
narrow lane - Chand Baug - where resides another Irfan Pathan. Popularly
known as 'Railwawale Irfan Pathan', he is a left-arm fast bowler
who played for Baroda, too. Not too long ago, the careers of the two
Irfan Pathans coincided.
"See brother, there were
two Irfan Pathans who have played in Indian domestic cricket - senior
and junior. I'm the senior Irfan Pathan and the one who is unfortunately
not playing for India now, is the junior one," the protagonist of the
story made it clear at the start of the interview.
though, for a cricketer whose career lasted nearly a decade, no one at
the Moti Baug Stadium, where he played all his junior cricket, remembers
him. Questions about Irfan Pathan's residence are always met with the
same answer - the one big, white bungalow which the locals pointed out.
a painstakingly long search under the scorching Baroda heat, an old man
made a clear distinction. "Irfan Pathan stays in that bungalow. If
you're looking for Irfan 'bhai' Pathan, he stays there," he said pointing towards a small row house. "He works for Railways."
Shafi Pathan's record in domestic cricket is an impressive one for a
fast bowler. He represented Baroda from 1999-00 to 2008-09, picked up 74
wickets in First-Class matches at an average of 28.25 and 27 wickets in
List A at 21.85.
"His father had just one dream. He wanted his sons to play cricket and make him proud. Irfan is still involved with the game. Usne apne baap ka naam raushan kiya hai (he has made his father proud)," his mother remarks.
father was a sports lover. Although, he never played cricket, he wanted
his sons - Irfan and elder brother Rizwan Khan - to pursue the sport.
Having seen them do well while playing with the kids at Railway Colony,
he decided to enrol them in a club. When Irfan was 15 years old, he took
them to Mehdi Hasan Sheikh, the person who also coached Irfan and Yusuf
"There used to be days, when they would
return as late as 9 PM from coaching. I used to get really scared. But
their father would reassure me that the boys were training with a lot of
However, tragedy struck not long after. "The two brothers were going for practice. Woh dono zidd kar rahe the ki cycle chahiye. Tab unke abbu ne kaha tum mera naam raushan karo, mein tumhe cycle la doonga (The two brothers wereadamantthat
they wanted a bicycle. That time, their father told themthat he would
get one the day they make him proud)," his mother narrated.
"Un bechaaron ke paas ek cycle bhi nahi tha
(Those children didn't even have a cycle). So I told my husband, you've
received your Rs 15,000 salary yesterday. Please go and get a cycle for
them in the evening."
evening, Shafi Pathan suffered a heart attack and passed away. The loss
didn't deter his sons from pursuing the sport, and they believed they
could bring honour and fame for the family. Irfan finished his
graduation and took up a job with Indian Railways. Rizwan, who too was
working with Railways by then, couldn't make it big in cricket.
Nonetheless, he continued representing his employers in corporate
Irfan did well for whatever time he
could, before a foot injury cut short his career at the age of 31. Even
after he recovered, he never played for his side again.
retired early. There was a lot of competition for me. Irfan was there,
Zak (Zaheer Khan) was there, Rakesh (Patel) was there. So it was
difficult anyway. Aur baaki to aap samajte ho (And you understand the rest)," he said.
fact that her son couldn't go on to play for India, didn't turn Irfan's
mother bitter. The fact that he is still involved with the game makes
her proud and happy. "Wo waale Irfan ka toh acha hua. He went on to play for India, my son couldn't. But, maybe that was Allah's wish. He does everything for the better."
Irfan coached at various age-group levels of the Baroda Cricket
Association (BCA) - Under-14, Under-16 and Under-19, before moving on to
coach the BCA Universities.
"Maalik ne jitna diya, utne se khush hu mein
(I'm happy with what God has given me). I got to play as per my talent.
There is no regret. Today, I get to coach these kids and impart
whatever I've learnt from the game to them. Rishi Arothe, Hardik
(Pandya) and all have played under me in age-group cricket. Their
success gives me a lot of satisfaction"
the option of becoming a match referee or an umpire or something. But I
chose to coach because I wanted to stay connected with the game."
today, Irfan and Rizwan represent Railways in B League matches.
However, the fact that Irfan is touring around the country for most
parts of the year isn't something that has gone down well with his twin
sons. The news that his side has won and their stay at Sagar - where the
BCA University matches were being held - has extended, only irritated
them further. The two seven-year-old boys weren't too pleased with his
father's team winning too many matches.
perhaps too young to understand their father's profession and passion,
but when they do, they will be proud, just like their grandmother has
The two Irfan Pathans are very good friends
The Irfan Pathan connection
per the narration of his mother, the two Irfan Pathans are very good
friends. "Irfan is getting married in two months. That time, my son
won't have an option, but to take a four-day leave to attend his
marriage," Irfan's mother says with sadistic love.
and I have been room-mates many a times. So our bonding has been good.
Even today, when Yusuf and Irfan go to practice in the nets, they call
me. I am still fit and can bowl fast," the broad-shouldered 6'4"
Despite the obscurity that
surrounds Irfan Shafi Pathan in the cricketing world, inside the four
walls of the house, the family is proud of his achievements. They don't
know about his cricketing statistics, but he is a figure they want their
next generation of kids to look up to.
bahut achi service karta hai. Railway mein kaala coat pehenkar ticket
check karta hai. Bahut acha post hai, ache mukaam par pahuncha aur baap
ka naam raushan kiya (Irfan is doing a job of honour. He wears a
black coat and checks tickets in trains.)," his mother says. " Rizwan
too wears a black coat and waves flags in Railways."
children refer to him as 'sir'. He is very strict and they are scared of
him, but he gets a lot of respect from them. Today, he has a car and a
better house. More importantly, he has fulfilled his father's dream and
is still involved with cricket. Aaj Allah ki dua se woh kaha se kaha pahunch gaya
. (God's grace has helped him achieve a lot).
Nalin Khaitan and the baby called Gemini Arabians -
11/2/2016 9:48:47 AM
For Nalin Khaitan, the CEO of the Gemini franchise, the MCL venture has been closest to his heart
"Cricket is something I'm absolutely in love with. Doing something in the sport was always my dream, and I'm living my dream."
an endeavour is embarked upon, fuelled by passion, it is little
surprise that it will attain success as has been the case with the
Gemini Arabians in the inaugural edition of the Masters Champions
"I've been interested in cricket for the last
20 years and have been playing regularly," Nalin Khaitan, the owner and
CEO of the franchise told Cricbuzz sitting in the stands of the
Sharjah Cricket Stadium while watching his team bat against Virgo Super
Kings. "This is a whole new level that we've taken our love for cricket
to. My dad used to play cricket back in India. I started training at the
Madan Lal Cricket Academy in Delhi and then I shifted to Dubai and
started team Interface which is a local club team. Now we have Gemini
With a squad that
contains luminaries like Virender Sehwag, Brad Hodge, Kumar Sangakkara,
Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Muttiah Muralitharan, Saqlain Mushtaq and Kyle
Mills among others, it looked strongest on paper. That did, eventually,
transcend onto the cricket field as well given that Gemini are
undefeated in the tournament until theknock-outstage with each of them working in great tandem with the other.
think the advantage we have over other franchises is that I myself play
on these pitches regularly," said Khaitan. "In Sharjah, in Dubai, you
don't need somebody bowling at a 140 kmph plus. You need somebody with
some good slower deliveries that's why Rana Naved and Kyle Mills have
been useful. On slow pitches you obviously need spinners. You don't get
any better than Murali and Saqlain in that.
went for batting heavy as the top order is what scores you the runs. It
was all very well-thought. We had done a mock auction as well. We spent a
lot of time in trying to build a proper team and we've executed it
Gemini, however, has not just been
clinical in every department on the field which has seen them find
different ways of winning, but the franchise has been run in the most
proficient manner off it. With clear roles and responsibilities
assigned, the lack of chaos has certainly played a part in the success
story of the team while other franchises are seemingly grappling with a
lot of extraneous issues.
"I've only implemented what I do at my local club level to the team and it lookslike
it's working fine," Khaitan said. "The feedback that I get from the
players is that they are quite happy and satisfied. I personally don't
involve myself in the game. I let Viru take care of the players and the
team. What I can contribute outside the playing time, I can do. I've let
people know their roles and I let them take charge."
junior Khaitan has been in the industry of telecom and mining for the
last 10-11 years, having followed his father's footsteps right out of
school. This venture, however, has been closest to his heart. Not just
on the cricketing front, but also on the personal front where he has
learnt much and is all pepped up about things that can be done
differently the following year.
"We had a meeting
with the general secretary of Dubai Cricket Council to see how we can
improve UAE cricket," Khaitan said, briefly distracted by Chanderpaul
throwing his bat at a delivery, quite literally as the ball went flying
towards gully. "That's interesting," he exclaimed before getting back to
what we were discussing earlier. "So, during that meeting, there was a
mention of the MCL and I loved the concept. We've all grown up seeing
the IPL and Big Bash and I'm thought to myself why not have a team of
our own? And if it is happening in UAE we shouldn't be left behind."
they weren't left behind in any way plausible as they're at the
forefront both on and off the field. "I'm lucky to have a great bunch of
guys (cricketers). They make my job so much easier. They're not a
difficult lot at all. They're very cooperative, very helpful. It's our
first time too and we tend to make our mistakes and instead of cribbing
about it, they guide us through it. So the experience has been fantastic
and we're looking forward to the next year where we feel we'll try and
do better than what we've done."
Sehwag had said at the start of the tournament that his side had the
advantage as it was an all-round endowed side, it wasn't underplaying
the opposition, but knowing Gemini's strengths, which, going by their
performances so far in the tournament was evident in itself. They
breezed through most games and found ways of winning in tougher ones.
However, going into theknock-outs, all teams start with a clean slate.
do have what it takes to see the league through, but will they hold
fort when it matters most? Khaitan would most certainly hope so as it's
not just his franchise that he cares about, but in the larger scheme of
things, he has one eye out for cricket in the United Arab Emirates.
ICC 'removes' Kotla as World Twenty20 venue, restores it later -
11/2/2016 9:47:59 AM
Kotla is scheduled to host four World T20 games apart from women's World T20 matches.
a major goof-up, the International Cricket Council (ICC), on its
official website, removed Delhi's Ferozeshah Kotla from the list of
venues for the 2016 World Twenty20, which gets under way in less than a
month's time. The glitch was set right by Wednesday afternoon (February
10) but not before causing a flutter in the Board of Control for Cricket
in India (BCCI) and Delhi District Cricket Association (DDCA).
is scheduled to host four World T20 games apart from women's World T20
matches. But the venue has been dogged by controversies lately and its
status as a host remains under question.
The ICC, in a rush to
declare the final fixtures list, not only removed Kotla as one of the
venues but also named Nagpur and Bengaluru as replacement centres.
BCCI, however, was clueless about the development. "We have not made
any changes to the World T20 venues list yet. Kotla is very much
scheduled to host the matches. I will need to have a word with ICC
regarding these fixtures," Ratnakar Shetty, BCCI's game development
manager, told TOI when informed about the new list of fixtures.
Thakur, BCCI secretary, has said last Friday that the board already had
a `Plan B' in place in case the DDCA failed to come up with required
civic clearances in time in order to host the games. It seems that ICC's
goof-up has revealed this plan a little ahead of schedule.
half an hour of TOI's call to Shetty, Kotla was restored as one of the
seven venues. "It must have been a communication or technical error
which resulted in this mistake. The correct fixtures are back on the
website. The call for change of venues has to come from the host board,
in this case the BCCI. We can't make that decision. If there are any
changes in venues, ICC will be the first to inform the media," an ICC
source told TOI.
However, ICC's explanation seems a little hard to
fathom because alternate venues were also mentioned in these new
fixtures. The group games had been allotted to Nagpur while the second
semi-final scheduled for March 31 had been given to Bengaluru.
in their hurry to correct the mistakes on the website, ICC has made
more goof-ups - the new list of fixtures now shows Kotla hosting India's
match against a qualifier on March 23rd, a game which is scheduled for
Bengaluru. Besides, the original lineup has England taking on a
qualifier at Kotla on the same day.
DDCA officials too expressed
surprise at the development. "The BCCI hasn't told us anything about
moving the World T20 games out of Kotla. In fact, they asked us to send
them a copy of our communication with the local civic body to ensure
that games can take place without a hitch.
"We have told them the
process of getting clearances is on and all renovation work will be
finished in the next 10 days. We're confident that we'll get the final
completion certificate," Chetan Chauhan, DDCA vice-president, said on
Wednesday. "We have removed some seats and raised the height of the
railings, so the stadium is up-to-date
Live Cricket Score of Bangladesh U19 vs West Indies U19, 2nd Semi-Final at Dhaka - Live blog : Bangladesh elect to bat first -
11/2/2016 9:47:20 AM
aren't off to a flyer. They have lost their opneres. But they are just
working the ball around and picking easy singles. They haven't looked to
score big boundaries.
Indies have strike early as Chemar Holder finished Pinak Ghosh's
10-ball stay at the crease. He pulled a short-pitched delivery straight
to the fielder at fine leg.
Hosts Bangladesh have won the toss and elected to bat.
Bangladesh U19 (Playing XI): Pinak
Ghosh, Saif Hassan, Joyraz Sheik, Nazmul Hossain Shanto, Mehedi
Hasan(c), Zakir Hasan(w), Mohammad Saifuddin, Saeed Sarkar, Mosaddek
Hossain, Mehedi Hasan Rana, Saleh Ahmed Shawon
West Indies U19 (Playing XI):
Gidron Pope, Tevin Imlach(w), Shimron Hetmyer(c), Keacy Carty, Shamar
Springer, Jyd Goolie, Keemo Paul, Michael Frew, Ryan John, Alzarri
Joseph, Chemar K Holder
and welcome to our live blog for the second semifinal of the ICC U-19
World Cup - between the hosts Bangladesh and West Indies.
teams have had a contrasting run to the semis. While the hosts had been
dominant in most of the games, West Indies were pushed into the corner
by Zimbabwe in a do-or-die clash in the league stage. It was then that
Mankading came to their rescue and Windies made it to the quarters but
not before they had courted controversies. Going into today's game,
Bangladesh have the advantage of conditions and crowd support. However,
Windies have some match-winners in their ranks and the raw pace they
possess can rattle the opponents. West Indies would also hope that the
demons in the slow pitch stay away. It promises to be a thrilling
Bird recalled for first Test against New Zealand -
11/2/2016 9:46:02 AM
Bird named in the playing XI for the first Test, ahead of James Pattinson.
team has named Jackson Bird in their playing XI for the first Test
against New Zealand, ahead of fellow pacer James Pattinson, on Thursday
Bird, who made his debut against Sri Lanla in
Melbourne, hasn't featured in the Australian line-up since the fourth
Ashes Test in Chester-le-Street, in August 2013.
Australian captain, revealed that the national selectors were unsure if
Pattinson was fit enough to resume bowling duties in the longest format
after spending nearly a month out of action due to shin soreness.
Pattinson picked up the injury during the third Test against West Indies
in January, and missed the rest of Australia's home season.
25-year-old Pattinson returned for the Sheffield Shield match against
Tasmania last week but had to withdraw mid way to fly out to Wellington
ahead of Australia's Test series against New Zealand. He bowled a
combined 21.3 overs across the first two days of the game at the
Melbourne Cricket Ground, taking 3 for 81.
"The selectors aren't
100 percent sure whether (Pattinson) would get through this first Test
match," Smith said. "So that decision was made.
"I think Jackson
Bird has been bowling extremely well. I saw him for the first time in
the nets yesterday and I thought he bowled extremely well "I'm really
happy with the XI we've picked and hopefully we can have a successful
Bird, who has played three Tests for Australia, has himself
been struggling with a persistent back problem. The 29-year-old,
however, made a successful return this season, taking 25 wickets from
six Shield matches this season.
"He's always performed really well
at Shield level and I think it's great that he gets another
opportunity," Smith said. "He's bowling with quite good pace, he's
hitting a good area and he's swinging the ball and swinging it late,
which is a great attribute to have.
"If he can get the ball in the
right areas in this Test match I think he can do a bit of damage. He
runs in all day, he's quite tall so he hits the bat a little bit higher
than you think and he generally hits good areas. I think that's really
important in this Test series, particularly if the wickets are going to
do a little bit. If we keep hitting those good areas, we're going to
create a lot of chances and I think he can do that for us."
have not tinkered with batting line-up as Shaun Marsh misses out yet
again, while fast bowler Peter Siddle makes a comeback after the ankle
injury sustained in the Sydney Test.
New Zealand, on the other
hand, have named uncapped Henry Nicholls at number four in their batting
line-up. Mark Craig is also set to be back in the final XI.
pitch at the Basin Reserve sported a significant grass cover on the eve
of the game and is likely to remain the same, and Smith has warned his
batsmen to be on alert.
"We haven't been good enough with the bat
on wickets that have been doing a bit in the last year or so," he said,
hinting at the Ashes disappointment in 2015.
"The wicket here
looks like it might do a bit so we've got a bit to prove and we've got
to adapt accordingly, a lot better than we have in recent times."
Australia XI: David
Warner, Joe Burns, Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith, Adam Voges, Mitch Marsh,
Peter Nevill, Peter Siddle, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon, Jackson Bird
New Zealand XI: Martin
Guptill, Tom Latham, Kane Williamson, Henry Nicholls, Brendon McCullum,
Corey Anderson, BJ Watling, Tim Southee, Trent Boult, Mark Craig, Doug