Yusuf is most dangerous of all Knights: Irfan | india | Hindustan Times
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Yusuf is most dangerous of all Knights: Irfan

It's not Brendon McCullum, Gautam Gambhir, or Jacques Kallis. According to Delhi Daredevils' Irfan Pathan, the real destroyer in the Kolkata Knight Riders line-up is big brother Yusuf.

india Updated: Apr 04, 2012 23:48 IST
HT Correspondent

It's not Brendon McCullum, Gautam Gambhir, or Jacques Kallis. According to Delhi Daredevils' Irfan Pathan, the real destroyer in the Kolkata Knight Riders line-up is big brother Yusuf.

"Hope a situation does not arise where I'm bowling the last over to him with 10-15 runs required. That's the only time when I guess I would be thinking negative. Otherwise, I will always have a challenge. I will be really happy if (he) scores a 50 or 100 and we go on to win. It's going to be exciting for the crowd. I was only talking to him last night about this..." the younger Pathan said, ahead of the opening clash for both the teams in the IPL 5, in front of a near-capacity Eden Gardens.

Having signed up for KKR last season, Yusuf has yet to set the stands on fire with the bat.

Don't enjoy this
But the 27-year-old Irfan was not willing to discount the threat his elder brother poses. "I was not expecting to play against him in the very first match. This is the only game of cricket I don't enjoy, a game where I can't handle it. Otherwise, I love this game. But this is what our job is. We are professional cricketers. We have to be honest to our teams and make sure we do well for our teams, even though we are brothers," Irfan said.

A few years ago, on the sidelines of a Ranji Trophy match, their father Mehboob Khan had said his sons learnt their cricket "in Allah's own backyard", referring to the Jama Masjid courtyard in Baroda's old city where they used to play.

Second chance
Irfan calls his comeback to the Indian team after recovering from a back injury as his second innings, life's second chance. "I am lucky and blessed," he said.

"Not many get a second chance in life. Obviously, I've changed my action, which is working for me. I've worked really hard. Sekhar sir (TA Sekhar, Daredevils' mentor) has helped me a lot. Eric (Simons, Daredevils head coach and former India bowling coach) also helped me a lot.

"It took some time to change my action. My alignment is much straighter now and I'm able to bowl a much better line. Especially after my injury, I needed to change my action. I was twisting a lot before," he said.