India is such a big country that everybody doesn’t get the opportunity to represent their country at the highest level. There have been cases where players have migrated to different countries to get more opportunities and have represented other countries. One of those countries is New Zealand.
Many players who were born in India or who have an Indian origin have migrated to New Zealand at a young age and started playing cricket there. There is a better chance of getting an opportunity to play for New Zealand, and it has happened with quite a few players. So, let’s have a look at the five Indian origin cricketers who played for New Zealand in international cricket.
1. Dipak Patel
Dipak Patel who was an off-spinner migrated from one place to another for his cricket. He was born in Kenya but then moved to England when he was 10 years old. He played county cricket for a long time but didn’t get picked for the England side, and so he decided to move to New Zealand.
Patel who has an Indian origin moved to New Zealand and got his chance to represent the Blackcaps. Dipak Patel is famously known for opening the bowling in the 1992 World Cup. He was a decent off-spinner and did fairly well for the Kiwis.
2. Jeetan Patel
Another off-spinner of Indian origin but was born and bought up in Wellington, New Zealand. The off-spinner who has represented New Zealand in all three formats has Indian parents but was born in New Zealand.
Patel made his ODI debut in 2005 and his Test debut in 2006. He played 24 Tests, 44 ODIs, and 10 T20Is for the Blackcaps. He retired from international cricket in 2017 and in 2019 he was appointed as England’s spin bowling consultant.
3. Ish Sodhi
Ish Sodhi who is not an off-spinner but a leg-spinner was born in Ludhiana in India. The Kiwi leg-spinner who is Indian by origin decided to move to New Zealand at a young age. Sodhi played his first Test very early when he was just 19. He didn’t perform well in the Tests and hence he doesn’t find a place in the Test side.
He is a successful leg-spinner in the white-ball formats, especially in the T20 format where he has picked up more than 50 wickets for his country. The 28-year-old leg-spinner will be looking forward to performing in the T20 World Cup which is to be held in India later this year.
4. Ronnie Hira
Ronnie Hira is another New Zealand spinner who has an Indian origin. The left-arm spinner made his T20I debut in 2012 and has represented the Blackcaps only in the shortest format. He has played 14 T20Is and has picked up 9 wickets at an economy rate of 7.78.
Ronnie Hira, who has an Indian origin was born and bought in Auckland, New Zealand where he has played all his cricket. He did well in the domestic T20 cup which helped him get a call-up, but he hasn’t performed well at the international level.
5. Jeet Raval
Jeet Raval who has represented New Zealand in the longest format was born in Gujarat, India. Interestingly, the left-handed opening batsman has played cricket with Parthiv Patel in his early days. Raval moved to New Zealand at the age of 16 and since then has settled there.
Raval had a prolific domestic season which helped him earn a Test call up, and he made his Test debut in 2016 at the age of 28. He has played 24 Tests and scored 1143 runs at an average of 30.08. A string of low scores didn’t help his cause and he was dropped from the Test side and Tom Blundell has taken his place. Raval is 32, and he might find it difficult to make a comeback in the Kiwi Test side.