Pakistan pacer Muhammad Irfan said in a recent interview that former Indian cricketer and current Lok Sabha member Gautam Gambhir was not comfortable batting against him.
Recalling the 2012 bilateral series, Irfan claimed that Gambhir avoided eye-contact with him when he dismissed the Southpaw four times in the series. Gambhir played only one more white-ball series before being dropped for the Indian side.
Speaking to Samaa TV, the 7ft 1 inch tall Irfan said, “When I played against India, they were not comfortable batting against me. Some of them told me in the 2012 series in India that they couldn’t sight my ball properly because of my height and also didn’t read my pace.”
“He (Gambhir) didn’t like to face me in match or when both teams had nets, I always felt he avoided eye to eye contact with me. I remember I got out him four times in the 2012 limited over series and he was unnerved against me,” Irfan said.
“I think his career ended because of me. He didn’t return to the team after that.”
Gambhir featured in just one more ODI series against England and was never picked in white ball format by India again. Gambhir played his last T20 for India against Pakistan in Ahmedabad in that series.
Irfan also claimed that current Indian skipper Virat Kohli faced problems picking him up. “He told me he thought I would be around 130-135 kph but I had increased my pace and I was bowling around 145 kph and he had problems picking me up. Once when he was batting he tried to pull a good length ball and missed.
“Yuvraj, who was at the other end, told him in Punjabi, “Don’t try to pull him, rather try to cut him. Off my third ball, he went for a pull and was caught behind. Yuvi Paji told him… now go back,” Irfan said.