Dubai: UAE veteran cricketer Freddy Sidhwa has perhaps become the oldest cricketer in the history of the game to bag a Man of the Final award. He achieved the feat at the age of 76 playing alongside renowned international cricketers from around the world at the historic Lord’s Cricket Ground in London.
Sidhwa, who plays regularly in UAE’s domestic cricket, notched up this special honour at the JP Morgan International Cricket Cup annual tournament held last month. Representing former England spinner Graeme Swann’s Dover House team, Sidhwa struck twice in succession to sink South African pacer Dale Steyn’s Princess Gate team in the final to ensure his team’s victory.
Steyn was so impressed by Sidhwa’s spirited age-defying display on the field that he presented him a bat with the words: “You are the definition of
Sidhwa owes his performance to UAE’s domestic cricket tournaments where he regularly plays. He also gets all his
On winning the man of the final award, Sidhwa said: “It was indeed a memorable experience. Though I bowl left-arm spin I was given the new ball and so bowling from the Lord’s Pavilion end I took the wicket of Steyn, caught by my son Shahvir, who also played for Dover team. With the second ball, I clean bowled the next batsman. Though I could not get a hat-trick, the early wickets put Princess team on the back foot as Steyn had remained unbeaten in all previous matches and had guided his team to the final. I had taken six wickets in the tournament and that’s why Swann gave me the new ball hoping to strike early.”
When I play cricket I feel like a 24-year-old boy. Cricket is one game I cannot resist playing... I think if you have
In July 2016, Sidhwa, playing in the same tournament, representing Team Madison, led by former England skipper Andrew Strauss, took the prize wicket of New Zealand opener Brendon McCullum but lost the match to McCullum’s Team Wall Hall. “It was indeed special to get to play with players like Wasim Akram, Dwayne Bravo, Darren Sammy, Graeme Smith,
Sidhwa, soon after celebrating his 71st birthday, while playing for Seven Seas team in the eighth edition of the Eat and Treat Cricket Cup, produced a six-wicket spell for 43 against Emrill Cricket Club. In the Sindhi Cricket
So what is it that makes him play even in his seventies? “I think if you have