Got Dravid with ‘ball of my life’ on debut: Pakistan pacer Sohail Tanvir
Remembering that India vs Pakistan Test match at Delhi, Sohail Tanvir, who came in as a replacement of the injured Umar Gul, said he had bowled the ‘ball of his life’ to go through the defences of Rahul Dravid.
Pakistan’s Sohail Tanvir burst on to the scene in the inaugural edition of the T20 World Cup in 2007. He straightaway attracted attention on his debut against India largely due to his unusual wrong-footed action. After a fairly successful T20 World Cup, in which Pakistan ended up as the runner-up after losing the final to India, Tanvir made his ODI debut against South Africa. But like many other cricketers, playing Test cricket was his ultimate dream. Tanvir made his debut against India in November 2007. The left-arm seamer fondly remembers his Test debut as his first wicket was former India captain and one of the best red-ball batsmen at that time Rahul Dravid
Remembering that Test match at Delhi, Tanvir, who came in as a replacement of the injured Umar Gul, said he had bowled the ball of his life to go through the defences of Dravid.
“Initially I wasn’t a part of the squad. I was part of the ODIs. Umar Gul got injured accidentally. The way I got Dravid out on my debut, I still remember it was ‘ball of my life,’” said Tanvir in a YouTube show called ‘Cric Cast’.
Tanvir said, he had remembered how Wasim Akram had once dismissed Dravid by bowling on the same line and length.
“I remember Wasim Akram had once dismissed Dravid - with the same length, the same line, the same delivery. The ball swung from left stump and clipped off the off-stump. It was my dream delivery,” Tanvir said.
Dravid was dismissed for 38 in the first innings. Tanvir had also gone on to knock the stumps down of Sourav Ganguly (8) and Harbhajan Singh (1) in that innings.
He had picked up three wickets for 83 runs in the first innings and went wicketless in the second. India had gone on to win the match 6 wickets.
Tanvir, however, has fond memories of that match as he had got an opportunity to the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, and Sourav Ganguly.
“Bowling against the greats like Dravid, Sachin, Laxman, and Ganguly especially in India was remarkable. These are the guys that have made thousands of runs in Test cricket. They have so many achievements. Especially if you talk about Rahul Dravid, he was called the wall. Breaking through his defense was very hard, being a youngster, and especially it being a surprise call since I wasn’t prepared for the Test side at the time.
“My self-belief and confidence has helped me throughout my career. I bowled well in the first Test. I took three back-to-back wickets. I got Ganguly, Dravid and Harbhajan Singh out. I got our side back into that Test.”
Tanvir, however, did not play Test cricket after that series. He played just two Tests for Pakistan.
“Unfortunately my Test career ended there. That was very unfortunate. Even when I think about it today, I think I could have played a lot more Tests for Pakistan. People call me a T20 specialist and white-ball cricketer but nobody knows about my strengths. They don’t know what I am capable of with the red-ball. If you look at my stats or ask people I have played against, you can get an idea. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get many chances.”