Samit Patel has described Melbourne Renegades’ dramatic BBL win over Brisbane Heat as one of the best T20 games he has ever played in, as the Outlaw returns from a stint down under.
Patel was called up to the Renegades early in the new year as a replacement for the injured Harry Gurney, and immediately made an impact on the hitherto winless outfit with his economical bowling.
But it was the day-night win at the Docklands Stadium which showed the all-rounder at his best.
Patel hit 23 from 10 balls to carry Renegades to 164/6, before snaring two wickets in two balls as their opponents collapsed to 120 all out.
“We managed to get up to a decent score – and it was nice to get some runs with the first proper opportunity I had with the bat – but they were cruising in the chase at one point,” he recalled.
“Then Boycey [Cameron Boyce] got a few wickets and I was able to back him up.
“It was one of the best T20 games I’ve ever played anywhere in the world – just because to win it from that position, when we looked like we were losing, was pretty special.”
The spell in Melbourne was Patel’s first in the BBL – a fact which the 35-year-old admitted left him feeling nervous ahead of his debut.
“I knew that from a bowling point of view it would be so different to playing in England,” he said.
“At Trent Bridge I know my style of bowling suits the venue, and I’ll always back myself, but the grounds over there are so big. I couldn’t be sure how my game would translate over there.
“Apart from the size of the grounds, though, there weren’t really any differences between the BBL and the Blast on the field – the standard is pretty similar.
“What was different was the hype around it – everyone’s talking about it wherever you go. It made it a really enjoyable tournament to play in.”
Notts’ T20 skipper Dan Christian took the captaincy reins partway through the group stages after Aaron Finch departed on international duty.
"DC was pretty chilled out and made sure he kept things simple, which can be really important in the T20 format"
Christian led the side to three wins from their final five games – but Patel admitted the mood in the Renegades camp was good even before the end of the winless run.
“There was a sense that the players knew that they’d start winning games,” he said.
“DC took the same sort of approach that he takes when he captains over here. Tactically, he’s very sound, but he’s not afraid to go with his gut.
“He was pretty chilled out and made sure he kept things simple, which can be really important in the T20 format.”
Patel's next overseas assignment will be in the PSL, as the tournament returns to Pakistan for the first time in over a decade.
The right-hander will turn out for Lahore Qalandars, before representing MCC on their tour of the nation.
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