West Indies in India 2011-12 December 5, 2011

Irfan keen to take full advantage of recall


Irfan Pathan, the India and Baroda seamer, has said he plans to take full advantage of his recall to the India side to play the final two home ODIs against West Indies, and that he is determined to give it his best as playing for the country means "everything" to him. Irfan has not played for India since 2009. He drew attention this year because of his performances in the Ranji Trophy in which he is the leading wicket-taker in the Elite division, having taken 21 wickets from three games.

"I am really happy," Irfan told ESPNcricinfo. "I am really pleased that I have been given the opportunity and I want to make sure I take full advantage of it; make sure I do my best." Irfan was with this family when he received news of his selection, and said being able to share the news with them made the moment all the more special.

"The dream to play for the country has always been there. When it is fulfilled you feel nothing gets better than this. Having all the luxuries in life - having a big car, big house - nothing comes close to this."

Irfan's last international match for India was during the 2009 World Twenty20; his last Test match was against South Africa in April 2008. He spent most of last season out with a severe back injury and has been working hard on his fitness and bowling action since, in an attempt to get back into the frame for India. He said the toughest part of his rehabilitation was not being able to simply go out there and play but his selection has vindicated all his hard work.

"It makes every second of [the rehab] worthwhile. When you look back and you work hard and you get the chance, you feel lucky, you feel blessed."

Prior to being selected, Irfan had said his current season could be even better than his breakthrough season in 2003-04. He said he is not only feeling fitter than ever, but has learned to use the old ball much better, in addition to his ability to swing the new ball. "If you are getting set batsmen out with the old ball, it is most pleasing," he said.

Having won and lost his place in the side, Irfan isn't taking anything for granted but said it was important to be himself and not try to change too much. "Be yourself. Be confident. Do what's best for you. At the end of the day, you need to go out there and perform."

Tariq Engineer is a senior sub-editor at Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • dummy4fb on December 8, 2011, 7:47 GMT

    love u bhai.........dying to see u in team and performing........!!

  • praveen4honestremark on December 8, 2011, 2:37 GMT

    Hoping a best performance from you Irfan. You are great all rounder. So, no fear...go and deliver your best. My wishes for you..& God Bless you.

  • dummy4fb on December 7, 2011, 20:30 GMT

    gd luck Irfan.. hope u get da best out of u :) :)

  • dummy4fb on December 7, 2011, 20:29 GMT

    I sincerly pry that irfan do justice to his talent this time around

  • cricfan90307427 on December 7, 2011, 17:59 GMT

    Just when India was loosing the 3rd ODI against WI, I taught an Irfan Pathan would be prefect in place of Vinay Kumar, I don't know if Vinay is a son of some cricketer or has an uncle hidden somewhere, Irfan gives the team proper balance. Just like Jadeja and Ashwin do.. I think he should be going to Australia for sure.. We will need more than 7 batsmen in Australia as our top order batting is bound to fail on bouncy track...

  • dummy4fb on December 7, 2011, 13:56 GMT

    great come back allrounder irfan bhai after a long time, good luck, be yourself n show the best, take as many wicket as posible. Wish u will be selected 4 Aus. tour.

  • dummy4fb on December 7, 2011, 8:56 GMT

    Irfan Pathan is back............... BEST OF LUCK!

  • Naresh28 on December 7, 2011, 7:01 GMT

    FANS its no use agueing about Irfan and Mithun. Both are lion hearted cricketers. Just like PK.Its better India has a pool of pace bowlers - adding Irfan is good. I feel BCCI should make the pool of pacers a wanted lot and treat them professionally. Look AUstralian - Cummins is now injured. Workload and rotation is needed. Zaheer and Ishant are always heavy landers just like Cummins. These bowlers should know their limittations and play to them. Nehra and Sreesanth have now joined the neglected lot.

  • maddy20 on December 7, 2011, 4:43 GMT

    One of the most prodigious swing bowlers produced by India is now back in action. WI are in for some serious action!

  • dummy4fb on December 7, 2011, 2:47 GMT

    Certainly you are the best.Some persons will never change but with your performance show them why you are best talent india had ever produced and show them that your place can not be taken by anyone except you in both test and ODI's.Wish you all d Very best.:)

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