Kolkata: Allrounder Irfan Pathan on Tuesday described his comeback to competitive cricket as a God's gift and said he wanted to utilise IPL's fifth season to get better and better.
A career-threatening back injury had forced him out of action for almost two years before the 27-year-old, once hailed as Indian cricket's next big thing, returned against the touring West Indians last year. There was no looking back since then as Pathan travelled to Australia, Bangladesh and South Africa.
The Delhi Daredevils left-arm seamer thanked bowling consultant TA Sekar and coach Eric Simmons for the turnaround. "I take it as a second innings, as a God's gift, blessings. Not many people come back after injury. I've been able to come back. God has given me a second chance to fulfil my dream. It's not just taking wickets, I'm enjoying every small, small moments after waking up. Be it going with team in the bus, practising... I'm counting my blessings," Pathan said.
The seamer said he was happy with whatever he is getting since his comeback. "I'm really happy with my performance. The number of wickets I took in Australia... Yes Bangladesh has not been good for me. But so far I'm really happy. The ball is moving, the seam position is really good. I might be going for runs a few times. But in death overs, or at the Powerplays, you are bound to go for runs, but it's important to keep taking wickets."
"Only difficult part was my injury. Everyone goes through such phases. But you have to make sure you learn from it." Pathan is looking forward to the IPL 5 to hone his bowling skills further. "IPL is going to help me a lot. I will be playing a lot more matches. I will be bowling at crucial time hopefully."