Former Pakistan bowler Umar Gul recalls his time with KKR and reveals the standout quality of Shah Rukh Khan

Mar 29, 2024

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In the ever-evolving landscape of cricket, the Indian Premier League (IPL) has emerged as a beacon of excitement, drawing players and fans alike into its electrifying realm. As IPL 2024 captivates audiences with its spectacle, former Pakistani cricketer Umar Gul took the fans on a nostalgic journey, reminiscing about his time with the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and revealing a touching aspect of Shah Rukh Khan‘s leadership.

Initial participation of Pakistan players and political tensions

The IPL, with its fusion of talent from around the globe, transcends boundaries and unites cricket enthusiasts in a shared passion. The inaugural edition of the league in 2008 saw Pakistan players like Gul, Shoaib Akhtar, Shahid Afridi, and others donning the vibrant colors of IPL franchises, fostering a sense of camaraderie beyond borders. However, escalating tensions between India and Pakistan resulted in a regrettable ban on Pakistani players, halting their involvement in subsequent editions of the league. Notably, Gul was roped in by the KKR franchise in the first-ever season of the IPL.

Umar Gul recalls his time with KKR

In a recent podcast interview, Gul shared anecdotes from his time with KKR, shedding light on the noble gestures of Shah Rukh Khan. Beyond the glitz and glamour of Bollywood, Shah Rukh’s humility shone through in the KKR dressing room. Gul recounted how Shah Rukh would often step into the domain of the players, not just as a team owner but as a mentor and motivator.

“Shah Rukh Khan used to come to the dressing room and share motivational stories with the players,” Gul reminisced.

Also WATCH: Rishabh Pant throws his bat in anger after falling prey to Yuzvendra Chahal in RR vs DC clash

Gull highlights the standout quality of Shah Rukh Khan

But it wasn’t just the words that left an impression but it was the actor’s demeanor that truly resonated with Gul and his teammates. The Pakistani pacer further even went on to reveal a remarkable quality of the Bollywood superstar.

According to Gul, one particular trait stood out amidst Khan’s many virtues is undoubtedly his humility. He revealed how Khan, despite his stature as a Bollywood icon, would sit on the floor in a touching display of respect for the players, urging them to remain seated and comfortable.

“He used to sit on the floor but never let any player leave their place/chair,” revealed Gul.

Gul’s narrative sheds light on the depth of Shah Rukh’s involvement with the KKR squad and how he assumed the mantle of mentor beyond the role of team owner, imparting wisdom and motivation to the players.

Gul’s impact in IPL 2008

Though Gul’s tenure with KKR spanned a mere six matches in the inaugural season, the memories forged during that time endure as a testament to the power of camaraderie and humility. The veteran pacer bagged impressive 12 wickets during his stint in the Indian league.

Also READ: Surya Kumar Yadav makes a special revelation on Riyan Parag after his blistering knock in the RR vs DC clash

For latest cricket news & updates, visit CricketTimes.com.

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