India news July 11, 2014

Mohammad Kaif set for Andhra move

Mohammad Kaif, the former India batsman, is set to leave Uttar Pradesh and join Andhra for the upcoming domestic season.

Kaif, who has led Uttar Pradesh to two Ranji Trophy finals, had a miserable first-class season last year. In 11 first-class games, Kaif managed just 265 runs at 16.56, failing to raise a fifty. After UP were bowed out in the Ranji quarter-finals to eventual champions Karnataka, Kaif found some form by hitting two fifties in the central zone one-dayers. Following the the lackluster season, Kaif contested the general elections for the Indian National Congress but lost from the Phulpur constituency in UP.

According to Andhra Cricket Association's director of cricket MSK Prasad, Kaif's form with the bat was the last thing on their mind when they decided to rope him in.

"For a side like ours with an average age of 22, we were looking to bring in someone experienced who could lift the spirit of the side," Prasad told ESPNcricinfo. "Kaif is one guy who can build that spirit within the team. That's the reason we have picked him."

Andhra finished third from bottom in the lowest rung of the Ranji Trophy last year. With Amol Muzumdar, the domestic stalwart who was a professional with them for two years, leaving Andhra midway through the season, the young side lacked the finishing touch towards the end of the season.

"Our youngsters need a role model to look up to, one guy who they could look up to and walk up to for anything they require," Prasad said. "We couldn't have asked for a better person than Kaif for this role. He is someone who has achieved the maximum with minimum cricket."

Kaif spent some time at the ACA academies last month and was impressed with the facilities. According to Prasad, Kaif is "looking forward to the challenge". Kaif will work with the new coach R Sridhar, who has replaced New Zealander Kaushilk Patel as the head coach for the new season.

Amol Karhadkar is a correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on July 16, 2014, 12:31 GMT

    Kaif is a great addition to andhra cricket and he would bring tons of experience to andhra cricket needs and it is the right move by andhra cricket to bring a player like gud luck to kaif and andhra cricket for the coming season .

  • Dummy4 on July 13, 2014, 6:08 GMT

    i agre with Johar..........i am huge fan of kaif..........good luck kaif

  • Android on July 12, 2014, 16:46 GMT

    kaif is those kind of player whose luck does'nt support him. he is a good player & iam sure he will perform got result to andra.

  • Dummy4 on July 12, 2014, 9:15 GMT

    Kaif is done and dusted. He emerged as a star after India's famous Natwest trophy victory but has been complacent since then, hasn't improved his game with changing times and eventually lost his place to the talented newcomers. In order to secure his place even in Andhra's team, he need to concentrate and improve his game.

  • Nayan on July 12, 2014, 5:26 GMT

    Md. Kaif should only to blame himself. He is such a waste of talent. In 11 first-class games, Kaif managed just 265 runs at 16.56 in last season. Than how he should expect that he should be picked for the next season. His record is so poor that he should not even be picked for IPL teams. Its high time that he should concentrate on his game now.

  • Dummy4 on July 11, 2014, 18:11 GMT

    Kaif St better than Rohit sharma but unfortunately we won't see him in Indian colours

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