Former Proteas batsman and current Dolphins head coach Imraan Khan turned 36 years old on Monday, 27 April 2020.
Khan played 13 years of first-class cricket between 2003 and 2016, which included a solitary Test in 2009. He opened the batting in the series-deciding Test against Australia at Newlands in Cape Town alongside fellow left-hander Ashwell Prince. The injured Graeme Smith was absent and Khan preferred to the out-of-form Neil McKenzie.
‘I must admit it came as a real surprise, but I’m excited and want to make the most of the situation. I will give this opportunity my very best shot and I want to do well to repay the faith that the national selectors have shown in me,’ Khan said at the time.
He perished for 20 – the lowest score among a top five with centuries from Prince, captain Jacques Kallis and middle-order kingpin AB de Villiers. Khan didn’t get a second innings against fast bowler Mitchell Johnson and co, as South Africa won the match by an innings and 20 runs. Seven years later, Khan’s playing career ended on the back of 76, 110 and 52 in provincial cricket for KwaZulu-Natal. He, indeed, opted to retire while still in form.
Khan was appointed head coach of the Dolphins in July 2019, after predecessor Grant Morgan left for Scotland. He had served as Morgan’s assistant for more than two seasons. His maiden season in charge yielded the One-Day Cup trophy, due to a technicality amid the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
‘We don’t make the rules and decide the outcomes. It has been decided by those that govern the game. But I think it’s a fair conclusion because we were the team that finished on top of the standings,’ said Khan last month.
Photo: Gallo Images