‘He sat with me for 40 minutes and...’: Saqlain Mushtaq reveals interesting anecdote when Sourav Ganguly ‘won his heart’

Updated on Aug 11, 2020 09:52 PM IST

Saqlain Mushtaq also hailed Sourav Ganguly’s leadership qualities and stated he will take the sport forward in India.

Sourav Ganguly and Saqlain Mushtaq(AP and Getty Images)
Sourav Ganguly and Saqlain Mushtaq(AP and Getty Images)
Hindustan Times, New Delhi | By

Former Pakistan spinner Saqlain Mushtaq praised Sourav Ganguly for doing a ‘tremendous job’ as the President of Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). Mushtaq hailed Ganguly’s leadership qualities and stated he will take the sport forward in India. Mushtaq also paid rich tribute to Ganguly’s humane nature, whom he faced multiple times on the field during the course of his illustrious career.

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“Sourav Ganguly has done a tremendous job when he was captaining India and I am sure that he will go a long way in taking cricket forward in his country as the BCCI President. All the best and go ahead,” Saqlain said in a video uploaded on his YouTube video.

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“When we used to play, there used to be a tremendous amount of passion from both sides. The fans used to make their presence felt. There used to be some misunderstandings as well, and even I have been a part of it. However, once the match got over, we all used to put it behind us. I have never had a misunderstanding with Sourav,” he added.

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Mushtaq also revealed an interesting anecdote from his time on the field when Ganguly ended up ‘winning his heart’. The former off-spinner underwent surgery in 2005-06 season and Ganguly’s compassionate behaviour left a lasting impression on Mushtaq.

“When India was touring England, I was playing for Sussex. They had a three-day practice match in Sussex and . Sourav (Ganguly) was not playing that match. Sussex won the toss and decided to bat,” Mushtaq said.

“I think this had happened in 2005-06. I had undergone surgeries on both knees and was bed-ridden for 36-37 weeks. I was both down and depressed.

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“I was making a comeback in that post surgery and Sourav had come to watch that match. When Sussex were batting, Sourav had seen me from the balcony. I did not see him because our dressing room was facing the other direction,” he added.

“Ganguly then came to our dressing room and offered me a cup of coffee and enquired about my knees, life, family. Then we just started talking. He sat with me for 40 minutes and ended up winning my heart.”

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