Sourav Ganguly was the bravest batsman I ever bowled to in my career: Shoaib Akhtar

Sourav Ganguly was the bravest batsman I ever bowled to in my career: Shoaib Akhtar

Shoaib Akhtar played under the captaincy of Sourav Ganguly in the first season of the IPL.

Shoaib Akhtar and Sourav Ganguly
Shoaib Akhtar and Sourav Ganguly. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

Sourav Ganguly is one of the best captains the Indian team has ever had. The left-handed batsman from Kolkata was a fantastic leader. He not only took charge of the Indian team at a very critical time but also helped the national team to go through a transition. Until he became the captain of India, the team would fail to combat the challenges of the overseas conditions.

But, under his leadership, India won Test matches in England, Australia, West Indies and Zimbabwe and also a series in Pakistan. He also led India to a joint victory in the ICC Champions Trophy 2002 and a runners-up position in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2003. Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar in a recent interaction revealed that Ganguly is his favourite from India. He feels there was no better captain from India.

Sourav Ganguly brought transformation to the Indian team: Shoaib Akhtar

During his interaction on Helo app, Akhtar pointed out that India wasn’t a great team back in the 1990s. However, after Ganguly took charge of the team in 2000, they went on to be a great team.

“If we see from India, my favourite captain is Sourav Ganguly, there’s no better captain than him from India. MS Dhoni was superb captain as well. During the 1990s, I never saw India as a winning team whenever they played against us. But, when Sourav became a captain in 2000s, I thought that the Indian team has the talent to beat Pakistan team and they did it. He brought transformation to the Indian team. Bengali people are courageous, gutsy and they can lead from the forefront, I love Bengali people,” said Akhtar when asked about his favourite captain.

Akhtar’s love affair with Bengalis can be dated back to 2008. He played for Kolkata Knight Riders in the first season of the IPL, under Ganguly. He bowled one of the best T20 spells of all time at the Eden Gardens in a match against Delhi. He took 4 for 11 in that match.

Talking about Ganguly’s approach to batting, he said that he was a brave batsman. Akhtar revealed that he feels Ganguly had the courage to face even after getting hit too many times.

“Many people think that Ganguly was coward and scared to face me as a bowler. But, according to me, he was the bravest batsman I ever bowled to in my career. He doesn’t have many shots, I tried to hit him on chest many times, but he still came as an opener and faced me like a brave guy and scored runs. He was a courageous captain for Team India”, Akhtar said.