Parthiv Patel made his Test debut at 17, becoming the youngest wicket-keeper during the Nottingham Test against England in 2002. Parthiv Patel fondly remembers his first innings, when he was dismissed for a duck, by English fast bowler Steve Harmison. But in the second innings, he showed composure to remain unbeaten on 19 runs off 60 balls, to help India salvage a draw against England. Cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar complimented his ‘temperament’ in that innings and Patel proved why he was selected to play at an international level.
The pocket-sized powerhouse continued to play as a first-choice wicket-keeper batsman for two year before his questionable performances coincided with the arrival of MS Dhoni at the international stage. This was about to be the turning point in his career. But he, did not give up, and always thought about improving his game not comparing himself with someone else.
Parthiv Patel: MS Dhoni was the captain and everyone else was battling for the second wicket-keeper’s slot
“You had to accept the fact and accept the present situation; there was no running away from it. At that point of time, the situation was that Dhoni was the captain and everyone else was battling for the second wicket-keeper’s slot. I had accepted it. After getting dropped I decided to set myself a certain standard, set myself a certain amount of intensity with which I would play my cricket,” Parthiv Patel told rediff.com
“Be it club cricket, be it Ranji Trophy, be it district cricket, be it the IPL or whatever level it is, I was going to play with a certain amount of intensity. I was going to enjoy it, the level didn’t matter to me. For me, it was about playing cricket. That is the reason for my longevity, the reason why I could keep myself fit.
“I was fighting with myself, always thinking of improving my game, getting better personally, not comparing myself with anyone else,” he added.
Patel earned immense success as a captain of the Gujarat team. He was the first to lead his domestic side to triumphs in all three major domestic tournaments — Ranji Trophy, Vijay Hazare Trophy one-day tournament and Mushtaq Ali Trophy T20 tournament.