'You don’t look like a pace bowler. You don’t even mark your run-up.'

Samad Fallah overhauled Iqbal Siddiqui's mark of 259 wickets and became Maharashtra's leading wicket-taker in Ranji Trophy on Friday.

Published : Dec 07, 2018 20:37 IST , PUNE

Samad Fallah celebrates the dismissal of Mumbai's Jay Bista.
Samad Fallah celebrates the dismissal of Mumbai's Jay Bista.

Samad Fallah celebrates the dismissal of Mumbai's Jay Bista.

Samad Fallah, the Maharashtra new-ball bowler, has had to deal with taunts even before and ever since he made his first-class debut in 2007. Having proven his worth over the last 12 years, Fallah, the ever-smiling assassin, had perhaps the most memorable moment of his career. After dismissing Mumbai opener Jay Bista on Friday , Fallah overhauled work-horse Iqbal's Siddiqui’s mark of 259 wickets and became Maharashtra’s leading wicket-taker in Ranji Trophy.

"Forget about picking 260 wickets, I had never ever dreamt of playing even a single Ranji Trophy as a teenager, so this is a real special day,” Fallah said with a wider-than-usual grin. “I may have overtaken Iqbal bhai’s tally but for me, he would always be the best pace bowler ever.”

When he was 19, Fallah had been selected for Mumbai’s U-22 team through open trials but a personal tragedy had kept him on the sidelines. The tragedy — something that he doesn’t want to be published — had sidelined him from cricket for two years and even after his return, Fallah, whose father runs an Irani restaurant, was hiding his cricket exploits from his father.

“My father didn’t even know I had started playing cricket so when Munaf (Patel, the former Maharashtra and India bowler) called him and told him I was selected for Maharashtra, he didn’t believe it. In fact, he believed in it only after reading the papers next morning,” Fallah recalled.

While dedicating his mother for supporting him all along and thanking all the coaches, team-mates and association officials for keeping the faith in him, Fallah could relish the fact that his father, who had once opposed his return to cricket, has adorned the walls of the cafe with Fallah’s paintings and statistics.

Sign in to unlock all user benefits
  • Get notified on top games and events
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign up / manage to our newsletters with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early bird access to discounts & offers to our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide to our community guidelines for posting your comment