The success of U-19 cricket doesn’t always guarantee you a place in the senior national team. Many promising Under-19 cricketers remain confined to domestic cricket. Wicket-keeper batsman Smit Patel, who was a member of the 2012 Under-19 World Cup winning team, is also one of them, who dreamed of debuting for Team India for 8 years but did not get a chance. The passion for cricket forced the 28-year-old Patel to leave the country. Recently, after announcing his retirement from all forms of cricket, Smit left India and went to America. Now he will be seen playing international cricket for America. However, for this they will have to wait till August 2022.
Navbharat Times Online In a special conversation with Smit Patel said, ‘I was dreaming of playing an international match for India for the last 8 years. But I didn’t get a chance. In India, there is a lot of competition among wicketkeeper-batsmen. I felt that my cricket career in India could not progress. So I decided to move to America. My parents have been living in America for the last 11 years. That’s why I thought that I can continue my cricket career by staying with him. Smit can now play in any cricket league in the world. According to the rules of BCCI, if a Chrissy cricketer wants to play in a foreign league, then he has to first announce his retirement from cricket. In such a situation, Patel is now free to play anywhere. Smit Patel’s family shifted from Gujarat to Pennsylvania in 2010.
Will play for Barbados Tridents in CPL under the captaincy of Holder
Smit will be seen showing his flair in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL 2021). He has been joined by the Barbados Tridents franchise. The command of Barbados will be in the hands of Jason Holder, the captain of the Windies Test team. Patel said, ‘I am very excited to play in this CPL 2021. It will be a different experience to play under Jason Holder’s captaincy. The team of Barbados has won the title under his captaincy. I have also started training for this T20 league. Hopefully I will be able to do well in this. The CPL will be held from August 28 to September 19 this year.
‘Wanted to play IPL’
Smit, a former right-handed wicketkeeper, said, ‘I waited a long time to play IPL but success did not work. Many times my name got shortlisted in the IPL auction but no franchise showed interest in me.
NOC from BCCI
Smit said that he has got NOC from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). He has no grievance against the board. Smit, who has played domestic cricket for Baroda, Goa, Tripura and Gujarat, said, “I had requested the BCCI for NOC and they gave me easily. I can play in any league now. Smit is a US green card holder.
Smit scored 11 centuries in 55 first class matches
Playing for Gujarat, Smit has scored 3278 runs in 55 first-class matches, including 11 centuries and 14 half-centuries. During this his best score has been 236 runs. He played this innings against Mizoram for Goa in the Ranji Trophy in 2020. Smit has taken 123 wickets behind the wicket, which includes 114 catches and 9 stumpings.
Played half-century in Under-19 World Cup final
Smit Patel played an important role in the team’s victory by batting brilliantly in the final of the Under-19 World Cup team led by Unmukt Chand. Born on 16 May 1993, Smit played a big role in making the team world champions by sharing an unbeaten century against Australia in the final with Unmukt Chand. He played an unbeaten 62 in the final. In that match, Unmukt scored an unbeaten 111 off 130 balls.
Dhoni’s wicketkeeping and Kohli’s batting are preferred
Smit said that as a wicketkeeper, he likes the wicketkeeping of Mahendra Singh Dhoni (MS Dhoni). He has grown up watching the batting of Sachin Tendulkar. But he likes the batting of the current Virat Kohli. Patel said, ‘I wanted to do a wicketkeeper like Dhoni. He is one of the best wicketkeepers in the world. He has been number one in the rankings for many years. As far as batting is concerned, there is no one in the competition of Virat in today’s date. Their conversion rate is very good. He continues to perform. He knows the art of how to finish the match.
[Attribution to NBT]