Home > Features >

IPL 7: Ageless Pravin Tambe is Rajasthan Royals’ invaluable asset

Pravin Tambe has surprised many by doing a fine job for Rajasthan Royals © IANS (File Photo)
Pravin Tambe has surprised many by doing a fine job for Rajasthan Royals © IANS (File Photo)

By R Vishal

Since the inception of the Indian Premier League (IPL), Rajasthan Royals (RR) have gained a reputation of plucking out gems from nowhere and providing them with a platform to express their potential. While the initial years emphasized a youth-centric policy, there was a certain sense of bewilderment when the inaugural IPL winners went for a little known 41-year old leg-spinner called Pravin Tambe.

Hailing from the talent-rich stables of Mumbai, the extreme levels of competition had resigned the stocky wrist spinner to playing club cricket throughout his career. Tambe was sporadically used in IPL 2013 and failed to cut the muster when he was given a chance. The Champions League Twenty20 (T20) changed Tambe’s fortunes forever, where he ended up as the leading wicket-taker and there was no looking back. The old warhorse even put the exceptional Sunil Narine to shade with his consistent displays and was instrumental in Rajasthan reaching the finals of the tournament.

Rajasthan pulled off another coup despite another newcomer less than half his age, Sanju Samson walking away with all the glowing praises for his matured displays with the bat.

42 now and still bustling with the energy and commitment of a youngster, Tambe has already established himself as one of the first names on the Rajasthan team sheet in IPL 2014. The newly appointed captain Shane Watson has also been mighty impressed with Tambe’s displays and used Tambe in a dual role of containing the flow of runs and providing breakthroughs at crucial junctures.

In the five matches that were played in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)-leg of the tournament, Tambe strangled the Hyderabad batsmen, while he went wicket-less. With Glenn Maxwell hitting sixes at will, Tambe read the Australian’s favoured scoring areas rather quickly and ended up being the pick of the bowlers in a game that Rajasthan went on to lose after posting a huge score.

A man-of-the-match performance against the powerfully built Royal Challengers Bangalore batting line-up sealed the deal about his abilities as a match winner. Tambe’s four for 20 proved naysayers wrong and grew stronger from there. Some of the illustrious Australian cricketers of the past decade reserved their best performances well into their thirties. Michael Hussey, Matthew Hayden post 2001 or Chris Rogers and Brad Haddin in recent times showed a situational know-how; picking the perfect window to catch their opponents off-guard.

Tambe showed a similar calm and cool head on his shoulders in Rajasthan’s epic battle against Kolkata Knight Riders, which his team won in the super over. After being hit for a four and a six by Manish Pandey and Kolkata looking poised to take the game away from Rajasthan, Tambe remained unfazed and foxed Pandey and caught him leg before. That dismissal went on to change the course of the game.

When the legendary Sachin Tendulkar — Mumbai’s youngest debutant hung up his boots in 2013, Tambe was making his baby steps in the domestic circuit. Tambe’s zest and enthusiasm for the game remains undiminished and will remain any captain’s dream.

Click here for IPL 2014 Points Table and Team Standings

Click here for IPL 2014 Schedule: Match time table for IPL 7

Click here for IPL 2014 Schedule & Results

Click here for IPL 2014 complete coverage

(R Vishal is a journalist and alumni of Asian College of Journalism. He can be followed on Twitter @vishhell)

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 30, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

Sri Lanka tour of India, 2014

Nov 2, 2014 (13:30 IST)   at Cuttack

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 3, 2014 (09:00 IST)   at Khulna

South Africa tour of Australia, 2014

Nov 5, 2014 (14:05 IST)   at Adelaide

Sri Lanka tour of India, 2014

Nov 6, 2014 (13:30 IST)   at Ahmedabad

More

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Nov 15, 2014  at Ahmedabad

Match cancelled

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Nov 7, 2014  at Bengaluru

Match cancelled

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 30, 2014  at Hyderabad

Match cancelled

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 27, 2014  at Hamilton

No result

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Oct 25, 2014  at Dhaka

Bangladesh won by 3 wkts

Photos

Pakistan vs Australia, 2nd Test

Videos

Tendulkar provides teaser on upcoming book

Duleep Trophy 2014-15 final: Central Zone 214/4 at stumps; lead by 111 runs

Live Cricket Score: Pakistan vs Australia, 2nd Test, Day 2 at Abu Dhabi: Pakistan reach 517/4 at tea

Yuvraj Singh — have we seen the last of the man who won India three World Cups?

Younis Khan continues piling up records for Pakistan

KL Rahul could be opening option for India’s tour to Australia

Australia Australia tour of UAE 2014 Australia vs Pakistan Australia vs Pakistan 2014 Central Zone Duleep Trophy Duleep Trophy 2014-15 India Pakistan Pakistan vs Australia Pakistan vs Australia 2014 South Zone South Zone vs Central Zone Sri Lanka Sri Lanka tour of India 2014

India vs Sri Lanka 2014: Wriddhiman Saha fit for first ODI

India vs Sri Lanka 2014: Cuttack curator says “dew factor” will come into play

MS Dhoni should remain India’s Test captain, says Adam Gilchrist

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: Pakistan finish on top on Day 2 of 2nd Test vs Australia

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: Australia lose Chris Rogers and end the day at 22 for 1

Rohit Sharma looks to strengthen career after an inconsistent year

Younis Khan equals Javed Miandad’s record of most 150+ scores by Pakistan batsman

India vs Sri Lanka 2014: Manish Pandey showing signs of fulfilling potential

Yuvraj Singh — have we seen the last of the man who won India three World Cups?

Younis Khan continues piling up records for Pakistan

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

678 Posts | 6 Fans

Video Highlights: Younis Khan century during Pakistan vs Australia 1st Test at Dubai

India A vs Sri Lanka: Fringe players look to impress

NGOs pursue education for all

Dance Basanti from Ungli: Put on your dancing shoes and practice the Basanti move!

Weight Loss Tip #59: Eat oranges to lose weight

Sensex surges 150 points in early trade to regain 27,000-mark

PricewaterhouseCoopers partners Google to offer business solutions to clients

Google X Lab working on nanoparticles to help detect diseases early

Priyanka Chopra has the best no make-up selfie on Instagram, think fans!

Lisa Haydon: I slept off midway while watching the original Shaukeen!

International programme in Animal Husbandry

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here