"Looking to contribute any way possible", newcomer Habib Gandhi confident about Bengal's SMAT success

"Looking to contribute any way possible", newcomer Habib Gandhi confident about Bengal's Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy success.

Koushik Biswas
New Update

From getting dropped in the second division cricket in Bengal, to getting selected for Bengal, Shakir Habib Gandhi has seen it all in his short career. The wicket-keeper batsman will tour for the senior team for the first time. He has been in the team as a wicket-keeper batsman along with Wriddhiman Saha. Saha, who will be Bengal's main man with the gloves, Habib wishes to learn from the "superman" as much as possible. Bengal starts their Syed Mushtak Ali journey from 4th November against Chattishgarh.


Shakir Habib Gandhi in Bengal T20 Challenge.

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In his early career, Habib was told by the doctor to stay away from the wicket-keeping due to a back injury. However, that did not keep him from donning the gloves. "Mauka to miss nhi kar sakte hai", he said, which means he could not let the opportunities he got.

However, he feels it was one of his second-division matches that turned his career. "I scored 150 in a comeback match after getting dropped for 3-4 matches", Habib said in an exclusive interview with Sportz Point.

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Contirbuting to team's success is my main motto: Habib Gandhi

A powerful striker of the cricket ball, the left-handed batter has batted at many positions for the Bengal team in age-group cricket. During his U-19 and U-23 days, he batted from opening to the middle order, anywhere he was given a chance.

"I am ready to bat anywhere. I am very flexible with my batting order. Contributing to team's success is my main motto"

Shakir Habib Gandhi in his exclusive interview with Sportz Point

Habib, just like many wicket-keepers in India is a fan of MS Dhoni. He wishes to be as sharp as MS with the gloves and game plans. "I always loved his composure on the field and decision-making abilities. I am a fan of MS Dhoni", Habib added. He is also inspired by thoughts of his childhood coach late Ghayasuddin Khan who motivated and guided him from his starting days.

With Saha in the team, Habib might get fewer opportunities as a keeper-batsman. However, he is keen to contribute and learn from this tour. Furthermore, having Wriddhiman Saha beside him will help him grow as a player.

"Wriddhi da has told me to be positive all the time. In these few days, he has told me to do a few drills which I think will help me with the gloves"

Habib on having Wriddhiman Saha's guidence.

With few IPL stars in the team, Habib and Bengal are confident in doing well in Syed Mushtaq Ali Tournament. Habib wants to keep his winning run with Bengal. He wants to repeat his U-23 glory days when he won the ODI trophy with Bengal in 2019. His aim is to win the trophy.

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"With the IPL players coming to the team, we feel very strong as a unit. Our main goal is to win the trophy. The whole team is confident about it", he said on having Ishan Porel and Shahbaz Ahmed in the team.

Bengal's Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2021 Schedule

1 4/11/2021 Chattisgarh
2 5/11/2021 Baroda
3 6/11/2021 Mumbai
4 8/11/2021 Services
5 9/11/2021 Karnataka
Bengal's Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy 2021 Schedule. Data Help - BCCI
Bengal Cricket Bcci Sportz Point Speaks Wriddhiman Saha Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy