Murali Kartik, former Indian left-arm orthodox spinner, recently opened up about the unrelenting backing that he received from former Indian captain Sourav Ganguly during his playing days.
Murali Kartik burst on the scene at a time when two of India’s greatest spinners Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh were at the height of their powers.
But Kartik did manage to make a few memorable performances for his team, none better than his six-wicket haul to win India the 2004 Mumbai Test against Australia.
Kartik also broke the popular perception that Ganguly wouldn’t select a slow left-arm spinner since he himself was pretty good at tackling them.
“If Ganguly played left-arm spinners well, why would I be at KKR for three years?” Kartik told Sportskeeda.
“Dada said ‘No, I won’t allow you.”- Murali Kartik
Kartik also played under Ganguly for IPL franchises like Kolkata Knight Riders and the now-defunct Pune Warriors. The left-arm spinner revealed that Chennai Super Kings had shown interest in availing his services for the 2012 IPL but Ganguly didn’t let that happen.
Chennai Super Kings eventually shelled our more than Rs 9 Crores for all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja. Jadeja has since then been retained twice and is now a crucial part of the MS Dhoni-led franchise.
“And also, when we came to Pune Warriors, he did not allow me to go to Chennai Super Kings. The year when Ravindra Jadeja went in the transfer window, they asked me, they asked the officials of Pune Warriors, but Dada said ‘No, I won’t allow you.” Murali Kartik revealed.
Kartik further revealed that Sourav Ganguly once forced him to play in fever against the Chennai Super Kings.
“Dada has made me play against CSK at Pune. He was insistent that I play, and I hope there is footage of that game where I am playing with a full-sleeves sweater because I was feverish. I’ve played with a fever. So, that is the case. People falsely say these things,” he concluded.
Murali Kartik last represented India in a 2007 ODI against Pakistan. He, however, continued to play the IPL till 2014 before finally calling time on his career.