When Asad Pathan bats, bowlers run for covers. He bats with the philosophy that the ball is there just to be hit. People watching him play, says that he is the new ‘Yusuf Pathan’ on the horizon.
That might be a bit far fetched but he showed glimpses of his powerful hitting in the Navdeep Cup one-day tournament in Ahmedabad recently. Asad scored a 100 in just 52 balls in the quarterfinal and followed it with another whirlwind innings of 88 from 52 balls and a 5-wicket haul in the semifinal.
Asad’s exploits would have made him an obvious choice in the Gujarat limited overs team but he couldn’t submit the no objection certificate (NOC) from his previous team, Railways, before the BCCI cut off date and have to wait for another year to be eligible to play for the state.
Gujarat missed him by a whisker but Indian premier League team Royal Challengers Bangalore is all set to sign him for Season IV. RCB people saw Asad in the Aurangabad Premier League at DY Patil Stadium last year where in four 15-over matches he scored two hundreds.
They followed Asad to the Anand Premier League where he won the man of the series award in a field where many top cricketers from the three cricket associations of Gujarat-Saurashtra Cricket Association, Gujarat Cricket Association and Baroda Cricket Association-took part.
Confirming the development Asad said: “Yes, they are sending me a contract shortly. I was busy travelling from one place to another so I couldn’t sign it before.” He however didn’t divulge any details of the content of the contract.
This journeyman started playing cricket in the dusty alleys of Ankleshwar then went to South Africa to play in the Limpopo province for one and half years. Asad had a highest score of 157 in the 50 over matches and scored two hundreds (146 and 120) in the T20s.
Asad was even offered a contract by the Nashua Titans franchise, one of five South African associate teams of which the Limpopo cricket team is a part of, but he decided to come back to India to pursue his dream playing big time cricket.
Asad was part of the Railways T20 squad last season but hardly got any opportunity to showcase his talent. He played just four matches scoring 46 runs with a highest score of 35 but he did so with a striking strike rate: 143.75.
“I am an opener and was not getting enough opportunities to bat higher up the order in Railways so I decided to comeback to my home state. But I received my NOC on September 30, which also was the closing day of the BCCI transfer window and now have to wait for another year to play for Gujarat,” said Asad who took his ill luck in his stride but is looking forward to his stint with the IPL team to make a mark.
“I used to bat cautiously earlier but with the popularity of T20, I have slightly changed my game to suit the format,” said the 26-year-old who has changed it so much that he always looks to be in a hurry to fulfill his dreams of playing cricket at the higher level.
Read more: Another Pathan on the horizon? - The Times of India http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/sports/cricket/top-stories/Another-Pathan-on-the-horizon/articleshow/7408478.cms#ixzz1D4bgCtYK