Yusuf Pathan: Powerhouse all-rounder braces for long innings in politics | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: Yusuf Pathan, who made his international debut during India’s triumphant 2007 T20 World Cup final against Pakistan is known for his exceptional performances in big matches,
Now, as a Trinamool Congress candidate, he is leading seasoned Congressman Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury by a significant margin in the Baharampur Lok Sabha seat in West Bengal’s Murshidabad district.
Yusuf’s entry into politics has been a surprise, but he remains committed to maintaining his image as a sportsperson while serving his constituency.
In a region with a substantial Muslim population, Mamata Banerjee‘s decision to field Yusuf against Chowdhury has proven to be a masterstroke.
Despite facing challenges from BJP’s Nirmal Chandra Saha and being labeled an outsider, Yusuf has embraced the fight, often repeating TMC’s slogan, “Khela Hobe” (I’m up for a fight).
Yusuf’s cricketing journey is a story of perseverance and dedication.
Growing up in Vadodara, he and his brother Irfan were exposed to life’s challenges from an early age. Their father, Mehmood Khan Pathan, worked tirelessly as a muezzin, instilling discipline and faith in his children.
Under the guidance of local coach Mehendi Sheikh, Yusuf honed his skills, especially his powerful hitting ability.
“Uparwale ka rahem, karam bolein (Call this God’s mercy, blessings), I always feel that I am for big matches, moments,” Yusuf had said after accepting TMC’s offer to switch to politics.
“I just have to bat for them. I don’t want to become a politician. I want to keep my image of a sportsperson intact. But after winning, I will work for my constituency and will make sure that I spend at least eight days in a month there,” he had promised.
Yusuf’s international debut came three years after Irfan’s, but he quickly established himself as a vital player for India in shorter formats.
He was a member of the MS Dhoni-led team that won the 2011 ODI World Cup.
However, his most memorable moments came in the IPL, where he captivated fans with a scintillating 37-ball century against Mumbai Indians in 2010 and played a key role in Rajasthan Royals’ title-winning campaign in 2008.
Featuring in all matches in 2008, he scored 435 runs at a strike rate of 179.01 and took eight wickets.
Pathan joined KKR in 2011 and became a permanent member of the team for seven years.
Although Yusuf regrets not featuring in any Tests for India, he now has the opportunity to play a long game in the field of politics.
With his determination and commitment to serving his constituency, Yusuf Pathan is poised to make a significant impact in his new role as a politician.
(With inputs from PTI)


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