Mumbai: After he failed to make an impact in the first Test against India at Kanpur, New Zealand spinner Ajaz Patel received a video compilation of all his international wickets by his coach Shane Jurgensen to boost his confidence for the second Test at the Wankhede Stadium.
The timely reminder of his abilities by his coach and mentor gave a booster dose of confidence to Patel, who had struggled to find his rhythm going into the first Test and finished with 2/90 and 1/60 respectively at the Green Park.
And the 30-year-old Central Districts player bagged a historic perfect-10 in India’s first innings to make it to the all-time honours’ list, joining Jim Laker of England and Anil Kumble of India as only the third bowler in the history of the game to take all 10 wickets in an innings.
“Shane really fizzed me up for this one. If I am honest, in the last game I did not have my rhythm and Shane actually sent me a clip of me against the world — basically he sent me a clip of all my wickets against different opponents. That really got me fizzed up and I was excited about this game… about coming here to Mumbai and that’s what I needed. He just keeps finding ways to get the best out of the guys,” Patel said in a video released by New Zealand Cricket (NZC).
Patel said that he was quite overwhelmed by the large number of messages and encouraging words from around the world including Anil Kumble and New Zealand’s legendary all-rounder Sir Richard Hadlee, who held the previous record for the best bowling figures by a New Zealander — 9/52 against Australia in 1985.
“To get messages from such amazing cricketers and legends of the game, it’s been very, very special for me and I thank them all for their kind words. I hope to get around to all of them but obviously to get so many messages, it’s overwhelming but it is very, very special to be mentioned alongside some legends and even to get messages from some of legends… it’s quite amazing,” said Patel.
Asked whether he was thinking about the honours’ list after getting all four Indian wickets on the first day of the match on Friday, Patel, who migrated from Mumbai with his family to New Zealand when he was eight years old, said he was thinking of that. “Yeah, I was on four-fer and I was like ‘wow, I would just make sure to get five to make sure I put my name on the honours’ board forever’. I guess it’s definitely gonna be up there now,” Patel added.
He said that it was a special occasion not only for him but whole of New Zealand.
“Obviously, it’s a special day for me and also a special day for whole of New Zealand to have a New Zealand bowler up there and to achieve something like that is very special for me, my family obviously for all their support, my extended family and my cousins who have always given me a lot of support. It’s amazing, amazing achievement for me and I never dreamt that something like this will happen to me in cricket.
“But here I am standing in Mumbai with 10 wickets in an innings against my name, it’s very special,” he said.