Imran Tahir’s life has been synonymous to a perfect T20 game. Going unsold in the player auction meant disappointment for the world’s No. 1 T20 bowler, but a timely call from Rising Pune Supergiant got him back to action.
Even though this format of the game has very less in store for the bowlers, Imran Tahir stood out with his figures of 3/28 and propelled his team to victory against the Mumbai Indians.
The leg-spinner came into the attack after the opposition had got off to a brisk start, but managed to provide his team important breakthroughs by claiming the wickets of Parthiv Patel, Rohit Sharma and Jos Buttler.
We, at iplt20.com, spoke to Imran Tahir and found out more about his spell, the delayed call-upto play in VIVO IPL 2017, and got an insight into the mindset he carries when he goes into this format of the game.
You are the No. 1 T20 Bowler in the world and today you bowled like one.
It’s a great feeling. Thanks to the Pune team who chose to call me and offered me a chance to play. It’s extremely kind of them to provide me with an opportunity to perform. I was initially very sad not to be a part of this league, but really pleased with myself to have performed well on getting an opportunity and making the most of it. The batters performed well and it was a good day for the team.
Unsold at the Auction, making the Playing XI and then three-wickets. Someone up there is writing the scripts.
I am really grateful to God and my family,especially my wife, for supporting me. I was quite low when I went unsold in the auction, but life goes on. I came here to prove myself again and my job is to perform whenever given an opportunity. Really pleased with my performance and looking forward to the upcoming challenges.
Your spell today changed the momentum of MI innings. Can you describe all the three wickets – how you planned those dismissals?
Every wicket is special for a bowler. The way the MI batsmen were batting, it looked like they would end up scoring 200-odd runs, but I always love such kind of challenges. I respect good batsmen, but at the same time I always look to get wickets and try and break the momentum of the opposition. I was fortunate enough to do so by getting the first wicket of Parthiv Patel, followed by the next two wickets of Rohit Sharma and Jos Buttler which were special for me. The three batsmen who I got out today are good against spin bowling and that’s what make these wickets more special for me.
I have been here for a week now and I’m trying to make the most out of my stint with the team. Credit also goes to the team for taking good care of me and giving me the confidence to go out and perform.
You always carry a smile. They say a leg-spinner has to have a big heart. Tell us about your mindset when you know you go out to bowl to batsmen who are only looking to hit you out of the park.
I do carry that smile on my face every time I take the field, but from within I’m always ready to take up the challenges thrown at me and try to give as much as I can. Also, it is an absolute privilege to play in the world’s best league, against the best in the business. I would simply love to capitalize on this opportunity.
MS Dhoni was keeping wickets to you for the first time. Tell us about any conversation you had with him during your spell.
I have a lot of respect for MS Dhoni, not only because of what he has done for his country and himself, but also because he is one of the nicest guys around. I had a few conversations with him in the practice sessions, but I did not enjoy bowling to him since he hit me for a couple of sixes (laughs). He has been very helpful to me and his advise is something that I would keep taking. I’m pretty excited to play alongside Dhoni.