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Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar (L) congratulates teammate Pagyan Ojha (R) at the end of West Indies first innings on the second day of the first Test match at the Feroz Shah Kotla stadium in New Delhi on November 7, 2011. West Indies were all-out for 304 run in their first innings. AFP PHOTO/ Manan VATSYAYANA (Photo credit should read MANAN VATSYAYANA/AFP via Getty Images)

Pragyan Ojha Reveals His Gift For Dismissing Sachin Tendulkar

Former left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha has revealed how he was presented with a special gift on dismissing Sachin Tendulkar in an IPL match. During the 2009 IPL, which was held in South Africa, ahead of Mumbai Indians taking on the now-defunct Deccan Chargers, which Ojha was a part of, the spinner had an interaction with the owner of the franchise, who guaranteed him a gift if he was to get Tendulkar’s wicket.

Sachin Tendulkar is widely regarded as the ‘God of Cricket.’ He has set almost every batting record in world cricket and smashed a whole lot of them during his stint on the 22-yard. Having scored more than 34000 international runs with a ton of international centuries, the Master Blaster of cricket set certain exemplary records during his career for the India National Cricket Team.

Sachin Tendulkar
Image Credits: Twitter

Now, Pragyan Ojha has revealed that he once received a special gift for dismissing Tendulkar in an IPL match in 2009 at Durban’s Kingsmead Stadium when Pragyan Ojha finished with 3/21, dismissing Tendulkar, JP Duminy and Shikhar Dhawan.

Pragyan Ojha Reveals The Special Gift He Received On Dismissing Sachin Tendulkar

Ojha’s wicket of Tendulkar was crucial as it triggered a slide for MI. Chasing 169 to win, MI were on song at 86/1 before Ojha’s three dented the chase and they were eventually bowled out for 156.

“This was in Durban, just before our game against MI,” Pragyan Ojha told Wisden India.

“Our owner came to me, and the way I was bowling in South Africa, he had a word with me. He is from Hyderabad [the team Ojha represented in Ranji Trophy], [he is] one of the team owners in our local leagues in the Hyderabad Cricket Association system. He knows me right from my childhood. He walked up to me and said ‘Pragyan, if you get Sachin Tendulkar’s wicket, then definitely I’ll have a special gift for you,” Ojha added.

pragyan Ojha, Deccan Chargers, Indian premier League
Pragyan Ojha (Photo Credit: Getty Images)

“He knew exactly that I used to love watches. I told him, ‘Sir, If I get his wicket, I need a watch’. It so happened, the next day, I got Sachin paaji’s wicket and he gifted me a watch,” Pragyan Ojha said.

Sachin Tendulkar’s Wicket Was A Special One: Pragyan Ojha

Ojha had Tendulkar caught at covers by Herschelle Gibbs for 36 and taking the confidence of his performance forward, the left-arm spinner finished as the fifth-highest wicket-taker of the season with 18 scalps.

“It’s a special wicket. Getting someone like Sachin paaji is a wonderful feeling, one of those wickets that you always dream of getting as a bowler. You feel nice, that you’re good enough to compete with people who have dominated world cricket,” Ojha added.

Pragyan Ojha
Photo Credit: BCCI/IPL.

Sachin Tendulkar is the leading run-scorer in Tests, with 15,921 runs, as well as in One-Day Internationals, with 18,426 runs. He is the only player to score more than 30,000 runs in all forms of international cricket. He also holds the record of the highest number of centuries in both Tests (51) and ODIs (49) as well as in Tests and ODIs combined (100).





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Anil Kumble
Anil Kumble. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Anil Kumble Used To Be Very Aggressive On The Field – Pragyan Ojha

Former Indian spinner Pragyan Ojha has revealed that ex-captain Anil Kumble used to be very aggressive on the field. In fact, Ojha stated that not only Kumble used to be aggressive against the opposition but also with his own players. It was noticed that Kumble hated if his teammate would misfield on his bowling. Kumble was known to give his all on the field and he expected the same from his players.

The legendary spinner was known to be aggressive in his own way but he would never adopt sledging methods against the opposition. Kumble however would not back away to let his players if they were lacking in effort. The leg-spinner wanted to give his 120% and there was no scope of leniency in his game.

Anil Kumble, 5 All-Time Caught-And-Bowled Experts
Anil Kumble. BCCI

Anil Kumble was known for his competitiveness

Ojha, who has played under the leadership of Anil Kumble, recalled the days. The left-arm spinner added that he was surprised to see such a drastic change as Kumble will always be calm and composed off the field but he was a fierce competitor on the field.

“When he was on the ground, Kumble used to be very aggressive, both with the opponent and with his own players,” Ojha told Wisden in an interview. “Off the field, you won’t be able to relate. I was taken aback, ‘Am I talking to the same person who I saw on the ground?’ He used to compete hard, but off the field, he was very soft-spoken.”

On the other hand, Pragyan Ojha also heaped praise on Sachin Tendulkar. In fact, Ojha had scalped a 10-wicket haul against the West Indies in Sachin’s swansong match. But, surprisingly, he didn’t get a chance to play for the national side after that game. Ojha also spoke about Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni and his Hyderabad teammate VVS Laxman.

Anil Kumble Used To Be Very Aggressive On The Field - Pragyan Ojha 1
VVS Laxman and Sachin Tendulkar (Image Credit: Twitter)

“Sachin paaji [Tendulkar] used to be very calm, composed. He never used to give any reaction. He had a different approach. Anil bhai had a different approach. [MS] Dhoni and Kohli, they want to win games for the country, but their approach is completely different,” he said.

“Someone like VVS Laxman would listen to Suprabhatam [a collection of Sanskrit hymns] and then go and bat. That is his aggression. Someone like a Kohli will be listening to loud, Punjabi music, showing body language – not gestures – and he likes to show he is in your face. It is not wrong in any way, it was just different.”

India has been blessed to have the services of players like Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, MS Dhoni, and Anil Kumble, who did a fine job in their career. All these big players served Indian cricket for a long time.

Pragyan Ojha, Ravindra Jadeja,retirement, Test cricket, Ravindra Jadeja
Pragyan Ojha. Image Credit: Getty Images

Ravindra Jadeja’s Allrounder Skills Might Have Affected My Career: Pragyan Ojha

Indian player Pragyan Ojha, who retired from cricket this year, said that he was not able to understand that why he was never called back in the Indian national cricket team despite giving a satisfying performance. The spinner last played the international match in 2013.

The Test series against West Indies in 2013 is very known as the farewell match of the legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar. But very few know that in this series, Pragyan Ojha registered his best career figure. He picked up 10 wickets in a Test match. However, this series became Ojha’s last international appearance.

Pragyan Ojha bowled his heart out for India:

Ravindra Jadeja's Allrounder Skills Might Have Affected My Career: Pragyan Ojha 2

The 33-year-old, speaking about his career end, said that he changed his state team to Bengal from Hyderabad for getting noticed by the selectors. However, as per him, nothing was working out for him to get a second chance to play for India.

“There are certain things that can’t be understood. I have thought about it (abrupt end to Test career) a lot of times. When Hyderabad got relegated, I moved to Bengal to play cricket because I wanted to play in the elite group. When you want to make a comeback, you have to play elite cricket. I had no choice. I had to leave my home state and play for Bengal. I am very thankful to Dada (Sourav Ganguly) for encouraging me at that time. I did well for Bengal and my performances were good but I was not able to understand what went wrong,” Ojha told Sports Tak.

I might have fallen back a bit: Pragyan Ojha

Pragyan Ojha,
Pragyan Ojha

Ojha has played 24 Tests, 18 ODIs and 6 T20Is. He has picked up 113 Test wickets, 21 ODI wickets, and 10 T20I wickets. He also had a successful career in IPL while playing for Mumbai Indians.

The former spinner also said that his chances of a comeback had become less after the emergence of Ravindra Jadeja, who with his allrounder skills had impressed the team management.

“Maybe, when Jaddu [Jadeja] came into the team, he gave the team a different dimension. He bowled very well, he was a good batsman as well, he contributes with the bat even now. Fielding, he is one of the best in the world. Maybe, because of the other dimension, I might have fallen back a bit,” Ojha said.

Well, now, Jadeja has become an important part of the team in red-ball as well as white-ball cricket.  So, far he has played 49 Tests, 165 ODIs and 49 T20Is for India.

MS Dhoni, Pragyan Ojha, 5 Indian Players Who Made Their Debut After MS Dhoni But Retired Early
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND - JUNE 09: MS Dhoni, Captain of India and Pragyan Ojha of India in action during a nets session at Lady Bay Cricket Club on June 9, 2009 in Nottingham, England. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)

5 Indian Players Who Made Their Debut After MS Dhoni But Retired Early

MS Dhoni had to go through to the path of hard work to reach what he is now. He didn’t have a good start of his career but worked on his skills which made him the best finisher and the most successful captain of India. He is the only captain to win three different ICC trophies.

Having made the debut in 2004, he made a permanent place in the Indian team. He was given the captaincy of the T20I team for the 2007 T20 World Cup team. After Sourav Ganguly, he took the captaincy of ODI and Test format. With his unorthodox tactics, he led India to the World Cup 2011 victory and following which in 2013, the Indian team lifted the ICC Champions Trophy.

Dhoni retired from the Test cricket in 2014 and left the captaincy role in white-ball cricket in 2017. The former Indian captain is under sabbatical and hasn’t played a game after the disheartening World Cup 2019. During his phase, there were many cricketers, who made their debut for India after him but retired early. Let’s take a look.

Here, in this article, we have listed 5 Indian Players Who Made Their Debut After MS Dhoni But Retired Early:

5. Munaf Patel

Munaf Patel

The pacer had a short career of five years which began in 2006 after MS Dhoni. He featured in the 2011 World Cup and had a brilliant out in the mega event but could not maintain the place in the team because of tough competition.

In ODIs, the right-arm pacer has 70 caps and 86 wickets at an average of 30.26. He hasn’t got many chances in the shortest format, as he played just three matches for India, and collected four wickets. The 36-year-old bagged 35 wickets, at an average of 38.54 in 13 Test matches.

He finally retired in 2018 and currently, he serves as a coach for Vadodara.

Virat Kohli, India U19, U19 World Cup 2020
Virat Kohli (Image Credit: Google)

Present Status Of The Five Indian Cricketers Who Debuted In International Cricket With Virat Kohli

The present Indian captain Virat Kohli is one of the greatest cricketers in international cricket history. Many cricket experts in the world have highly praised his batting. Kohli has surprised with his incredible consistency in batting in every format. At present, he is not only scoring runs but also breaking some long-standing top batting records.

Kohli first time impressed the world when he led the India U19 cricket team to win the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup 2008. Later on 18th August 2008, Kohli made his international debut during the Dambulla ODI against Sri Lanka. Kohli gradually fixed his place in every format of the national team, and now he is dominating the world cricket with his batting.

Here we are talking about the present status of the five other Indian cricketers who made international debuts during Virat Kohli’s international debut

Manpreet Gony

Manpreet Gony, cricketers, Kohli
Photo Credit: PRAKASH SINGH/AFP/Getty Images

The right-arm pacer Manpreet Gony made his international cricket debut on 25th June 2008 during the Karachi ODI against Hong Kong. He played only another ODI for India which was against Bangladesh at Karachi on 28th June 2008. Gony managed to pick up two wickets in ODI career.

Gony impressed in all the formats during his initial career, including in the T20 cricket. In the inaugural IPL season, Gony managed to pick up 17 wickets and finished as the joint fourth most wicket-taker in that tournament.

During the match against Madhya Pradesh in the quarter-final of the 2011/12 Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy on 25th March 2012, Punjab pacer Gony became the first bowler to claim three maiden overs (4-3-5-3) in a T20 cricket match history. He is still holding the record of most maidens in a T20 innings along with four other bowlers.

Gony played IPL till 2017 as he managed to pick up 37 wickets in 44 matches. His career faded away during the second half of his career. While he took retirement from all forms of cricket in June 2019, he is still active in unrecognised matches as he participated in the Global T20 Canada 2019, Qatar T10 League 2019 and Road Safety World Series 2020.

Pragyan Ojha, MS Dhoni, Bowler's Captain
Pragyan Ojha. Photo Credit: BCCI.

MS Dhoni Was A Bowler’s Captain: Pragyan Ojha

Former Indian cricketer Pragyan Ojha has announced retirement from all forms of cricket last week on 21st February. The spinner last played a game for India in 2013 after which he just featured in domestic cricket including Indian Premier League (IPL). He got the opportunity in the Indian team under the captaincy of MS Dhoni. Ojha went on to praise the leadership of Dhoni.

The 33-year old cricketer Ojha played his maiden match in 2008. He then became a constant feature in the Indian team but he was barred from bowling in competitive cricket after his action was found to be illegal.

Though  Ojha cleared the test and was allowed to resume his bowling. But he had already lost his place in the team.

MS Dhoni Was A Bowler's Captain: Pragyan Ojha 3

All in all, he has played 18 ODIs, 24 Tests, and 6 T20Is. He has picked 113 wickets in Tests while in shorter formats he has snared 31 wickets.

Pragyan Ojha Praises MS Dhoni’s Captaincy:

The left-arm spinner strongly believes that Dhoni was the captain of bowlers. He expressed that former Indian captain understood the bowler’s need and assisted bowlers impressively as per the requirement.

ms dhoni, dhoni, Pragyan Ojha
Photo Credit: BCCI.

“He (Dhoni) was a bowler’s captain. I strongly believe that a bowler should have a captain who understands him. A lot of bowlers praise Dhoni because of the dimensions he gives you, things that he helps you with like placing the field, keeping your mind clear which are important when you play high-intensity games,” Ojha told Times of India.

Ojha also mentioned his Mumbai Indian’s captain Rohit Sharma is also the bowler’s captain. Rohit and Ojha were the part of the 2009 IPL-winning team– Deccan Chargers (DC) where Ojha sizzled with 18 wickets at an average of 19.33. Both of them together had lifted three titles of IPL.

Earlier, Rohit Sharma also posted a heartfelt message for his ex-teammate on Twitter.

Meanwhile, the player will be seen in IPL while enjoying the commentary stint.

Rohit Sharma, Pragyan Ojha, Retirement, Message
Pragyan Ojha and Rohit Sharma. Photo Credit: BCCI/IPL.

Pragyan Ojha Receives Heart-Warming Message From Rohit Sharma On His Retirement

Former Indian cricketer Pragyan Ojha announced his retirement from the game of cricket on Friday after releasing a statement on social media. At one point, he was an indispensable part of the Indian team before being dropped from the team because of his illegal bowling action. However, he continued his show in the Indian Premier League (IPL). His best came for Mumbai Indians under the captaincy of Rohit Sharma.

Taking to Twitter, India’s vice-captain wished Ojha all the best for his future endeavour while reminiscing about sharing the dressing room and much more.

“Ojhi, what a pleasure it has been to share some exciting memories whilst playing for India and Mumbai Indians. Our friendship goes way beyond the cricket pitch. Look forward to seeing you on the other side and passing on some knowledge to the next generation,” Rohit Sharma wrote.

Pragyan Ojha’s rise and fall:

Ojha has made the debut in the team in 2008 after impressing with his bowling in IPL, the same year. Rohit and Ojha were the part of the 2009 IPL-winning team– Deccan Chargers– where Ojha sizzled with 18 wickets at an average of 19.33.

Soon, Ojha got the limelight in the international cricket but he was barred from bowling in competitive cricket after his action was found to be illegal.

However, soon Ojha cleared the test and was allowed to resume his bowling. But he had already lost his place in the team.

Pragyan Ojha
Pragyan Ojha. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

All in all, he has played 18 ODIs, 24 Tests, and 6 T20Is. He has picked 113 wickets in Tests while in shorter formats he has 31 wickets in his name.

Ojha’s last game was Sachin Tendulkar‘s farewell Test at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai in November 2013. And, Not many people would remember that the off-spinner claimed a ten-wicket-haul in that game.

Meanwhile, the player will be seen in IPL while enjoying the commentary stint.

India, Five Legendary Cricketers Who Never Captained Team India
Team India in a huddle. Credits: BCCI Twitter

Indian Cricketers Who Won Player Of The Match Award On T20I Debut

Every cricketer dreams to play international cricket. During any stage of their career, debuting is one of the most special moments. Most of the cricketers can’t forget their very first experience.

More than 2,000 cricketers have played T20I cricket. A total of 62 players have won the Player of the Match awards on their T20I debuts. However, India have six players who won the Player of the Match award on their respective T20I debuts.

Indian cricketers Who have won Player Of The Match award On their T20I Debuts

Dinesh Karthik

debut, Player of the Match, T20I
Image Credits: BCCI

It was the first T20I game for the Indian team. So, all the 11 Indian players made their T20I debuts in that game, and Dinesh Karthik was one of them, but he created history by becoming the first Indian to win the Player of the Match award in T20I.

It was Johannesburg T20I against the hosts South Africa on 1st December 2006. After South Africa won the toss, they managed to score 126/9 (20 overs) in the first batting. In reply, India chased down that target in 19.5 overs after losing four wickets.

Read More: New Zealand vs India 2020: 1st Test, Day 2 – New Zealand Lead By 51 runs; Bundle Out India for 165

Apart from involving in a run-out, the right-handed middle-order batsman Dinesh Karthik scored 31 not out off 28 balls (3 fours and only six). In the last over of the game, India needed to score nine runs to win that match, and Karthik hit a sixer on the first ball of that over which made their finishing job very easier.

Pragyan Ojha, Retires, International Cricket, First-Class Cricket
Pragyan Ojha retires from International cricket. Photo Credit: Twitter

Pragyan Ojha Retires From International, First-Class Cricket With Immediate Effect

Left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha, who represented the country at the highest level has retired from international and first-class cricket with immediate effect. Ojha himself took to his official Twitter handle to confirm the news about his retirement and thanked everyone for their relentless support throughout his cricketing career.

Ojha was last seen playing for India against the West Indies in legendary Sachin Tendulkar‘s farewell Test match in the year 2013. The Odisha-born bowler made his Test debut for the Indian national cricket team against Sri Lanka in 2009.

Pragyan Ojha Retires From International, First-Class Cricket With Immediate Effect 4
Pragyan Ojha. Credits: Twitter

He made an instant impact with the ball as he accounted for 113 dismissals in just 24 Tests.

The 33-year-old Ojha represented India in 18 ODIs and six T20Is, where he bagged 21 and 10 wickets respectively.

It is time I move on to the next phase of my life: Pragyan Ojha

Ojha is looking forward to a new chapter in his life and for him, the next goal is to teach the important lessons of life to his beloved son Yohaan.

“It’s time I move on to the next phase of my life. The love and support of each and every individual will always remain with me and motivate me all the time,” Pragyan Ojha tweeted.

Ojha and Ganugly was at war ahead of Ranji season
Pragyan Ojha and Sourav Ganguly. Credits: Twitter

Notably, Ojha brought the best out of himself in first-class cricket where he took 424 wickets in 108 matches. His last appearance in first-class cricket came in the year 2018 when he plied his trade for Bihar against Uttarakhand.

He represented the now-defunct Deccan Chargers and was part of the title-winning team in IPL 2009. Ojha impressed everyone in the IPL 2009 final where he was the pick of the bowlers for bagging three for 28 in his four-over bowling spell.

After a memorable campaign, he played for Mumbai Indians (MI) in the Indian Premier League (IPL). His last appearance in the IPL came in the year 2015. Having played 92 games in IPL, he bagged a total of 89 wickets.

Read More: New Zealand vs India 2020: India Have a World-Class Side, says Kane Williamson

Road Safety World Series 2020
(Image Credit: Getty Images)

Road Safety World Series 2020: India Legends Squad Announced

On last Sunday (16th February), the India Legends squad has been announced for the upcoming Road Safety World Series 2020. Many Indian legends are getting ready for this initiative.

A total of five teams will participate in the Road Safety World Series 2020. It will be the T20 tournament that will run between 7th March and 22nd March 2020. After the single round-robin stage, the top two teams in the final points table will qualify for the final of this tournament.

India Legends squad: four players from 2007 ICC World T20-winning team and five players from 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup-winning team

The legendary Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar will lead the India Legends. Apart from Tendulkar, four more cricketers from the 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup-winning Indian squad will also serve for India Legends. These four cricketers are Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh, Zaheer Khan and Munaf Patel.

India Legends, Road Safety World Series 2020
Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag (Image Credit: Google)

Apart from Virender Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh, there are two more players in this squad who were the members of 2007 ICC World T20-winning squad. These players are Irfan Pathan and Ajit Agarkar.

India Legends, Road Safety World Series 2020
Yuvraj Singh (Photo Credit: Getty Images)

Mohammad Kaif is also in this star-cast squad along with the former all-rounder and batting coach of the Indian national cricket team, Sanjay Bangar. Sameer Dighe will handle the wicketkeeping role of the team. Pragyan Ojha and Sairaj Bahutule have been included in this squad as the spinners.

India Legends squad: Sachin Tendulkar (C), Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh, Zaheer Khan, Irfan Pathan, Ajit Agarkar, Sanjay Bangar, Munaf Patel, Mohammad Kaif, Pragyan Ojha, Sairaj Bahutule and Sameer Dighe (wk).

Complete fixtures of the Road Safety World Series 2020

7th March: India Legends vs West Indies Legends (Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai)

8th March: Australia Legends vs Sri Lanka Legends (Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai)

10th March: India Legends vs Sri Lanka Legends (DY Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai)

11th March: West Indies Legends vs South Africa Legends (DY Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai)

13th March: South Africa Legends vs Sri Lanka Legends (DY Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai)

14th March: India Legends vs South Africa Legends (MCA Stadium, Pune)

16th March: Australia Legends vs West Indies Legends (MCA Stadium, Pune)

17th March: West Indies Legends vs Sri Lanka Legends (MCA Stadium, Pune)

19th March: Australia Legends vs South Africa Legends (DY Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai)

20th March: India Legends vs Australia Legends (MCA Stadium, Pune)

22nd March: FINAL (Brabourne Stadium, Mumbai)

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