Manzoor Dar nicknamed ‘Pandav’ by the people who know him due to his explosive approach to the game, reckons he wants to replicate former Indian skipper MS Dhoni in the IPL. After Parvez Rasool, Dar is only the second player to be picked up by an IPL team from the state of Jammu and Kashmir.
Kashmir-born Manzoor Dar has come a long way from his humble beginnings as he was sold for Rs. 20 Lakh at the recently concluded IPL auction that took place in Bangalore last weekend. Dar went from a Rs. 20 daily wager to being a part of one of the most watched leagues in the world. The player from Kashmir is more commonly known as ‘Pandav’ which is derived from his aggressive batting approach towards bowlers. Dar represented Jammu and Kashmir in the recently concluded Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy and played some good knocks along the way.
Dar stated that he was deeply grateful to KXIP owner Preity Zinta and co. who placed their trust in him and is eager to get on the pitch and repay that trust for the club.
"I am really thankful to God for this opportunity, also KXIP and Preity (Zinta) mam. My life has been full of struggle and when I finally found a team (at auction), I thought about the time I used to earn Rs 60 in the village as a daily labourer," Dar told PTI from Jammu as he prepared for the state team trials for the Vijay Hazare Trophy to be played next month.
Dar wasn’t picked up by any team last year but after being asked to attend a trial by the Rajasthan Royals franchise last year, he was confident of being selected this time around. Dar looks
"It will be huge to play alongside him. The others in the game whom I look up to are Kapil Dev and MS Dhoni. I always wanted to hit sixes like Dhoni," Dar added.
Rs. 20 Lakh might not be much for modern-day cricketers, but for Manzoor Dar, who is trying to put together a home for his family, that amount arrived as a blessing.
"I have been building the house back home for the past three years. It still doesn't have doors and windows but hopefully, I would be able to get the work done now. I will also use the money for the treatment of my ailing mother," the J&K cricketer added.
Jammu and Kashmir’s most famed cricketer Parvez Rasool and medium pacer Umar Nazir went unsold this year as no bids came in for the duo during the auction that took place in Bangalore over the weekend.