Former Pakistan speedster Shoaib Akhtar recalled the moment of dismissing the Indian batting great Sachin Tendulkar in an IPL match between Mumbai Indians (MI) and Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) at the Wankhede Stadium in IPL 2008.
Sourav Ganguly-led KKR were bowled out for a paltry score of 67 in 15.2 overs, courtesy of Shaun Pollock’s 3/12 with Dwayne Bravo, Rohan Raje and Dominic Thornley picked two wickets each. Akhtar got MI skipper Tendulkar for a duck in the very first over of the second innings, however, MI chased the low score in 5.3 overs and won by eight wickets.
Who told you to dismiss Sachin Tendulkar?: Shoaib Akhtar reveals Sourav Ganguly’s message
Going down memory lane, Akhtar said Ganguly had shouted at him for getting Tendulkar’s wicket in front of his home crowd in Mumbai.
“We had scored really less. When the match began, the atmosphere was electric. It was Sachin’s city, Mumbai.
“It was Sachin Tendulkar vs Shoaib Akhtar and we at KKR had Shahrukh Khan in the stadium as well. The stadium and entire Mumbai was packed. Ahead of the match, we were having friendly chat and both Sachin and I greeted each other,” Akhtar told SportsKeeda.
“It was a beautiful ground and a fantastic atmosphere. The stadium was fully packed. But I dismissed Sachin Tendulkar in the first over itself and that was a huge mistake. Then I got a lot of abuses when I was at fine leg. Sourav Ganguly told me, Come to mid-wicket, these people will kill you. Who told you to dismiss Sachin? That too in Mumbai?” he added.
The crowd at Wankhede was very passionate: Shoaib Akhtar
Akhtar wished that he could have played more matches at the Wankhede stadium as he felt gratified to play in front of the Mumbai crowd.
“I worked a lot in Mumbai and got lots of love. I was happy because at Wankhede no one abused my country, no one passed any racist comments. The crowd at Wankhede was very passionate. I wish I played more games there,” Akhtar said.
Akhtar, who is called the ‘Rawalpindi Express’ for his explorable speed, had clocked 161.3 kph against England during a 2003 World Cup fixture. It has been a decade since the Rawalpindi-born pacer took retirement from international cricket but his extraordinary record remains intact.