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Five things to know about Ajaz Patel

Mumbai-born Patel became only the third bower in Test cricket to take 10 wickets in an innings after Jim Laker and Anil Kumble

December 04, 2021 / 03:22 PM IST

In the 144-year-old history of Test cricket, New Zealand left-arm spinner Ajaz Patel on Saturday achieved stupendous feat of taking all the 10 wickets in an inning. Mumbai-born Patel became only the third bower in Test cricket to take 10 wickets in an innings after Jim Laker and Anil Kumble on the second day of the second Test against India at Wankhede stadium.

Here are five things about the left arm spinner that may interest you:

1. Patel hails from Tankaria village in the Bharuch district of Gujarat. He moved New Zealand in 1996, when he was 8 years old. Soon after moving to New Zealand, his uncle enrolled him at Suburbs New Lynn Cricket Club in Auckland. He is the fifth Indian-origin cricketer to play for New Zealand after Ted Badcock, Tom Puna, Ish Sodhi and Jeet Raval.

2. Ajaz couldn’t make to New Zealand’s U-19 team. However, Dipak Patel - a Kenyan-born former New Zealand cricketer - his then coach encouraged him to make certain changes in his bowling. While Ajaz initially started as a faster bowler, in his mid-twenties on Dipak’s recommendation he decided to try out spin bowling.

3. In 2018, the left hand spinner emerged as the leading wicket-taker in Plunket Shield - 48 wickets in 9 games. He was awarded with the Men's Domestic Player of the Year. Ajaz's rise to international cricket is backed by his consistent performance at domestic level.

4. He was the highest wicket-taker in first-class cricket for three years running before he got the call from selector Gavin Larsen in July 2018. On 31 October, 2018 - at the age of 30 – Patel opened the bowling for New Zealand in a T20I against Pakistan.

5. With all 10 wickets in his kitty, Ajaz has surpassed the great Richard Hadlee to record the best figures by a New Zealand bowler. Hadlee had taken nine for 52 versus Australia back in 1985.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Dec 4, 2021 03:20 pm