Sarfaraz and his Father Shared

Sarfaraz and his Father Shared

A Journey That Began with a Record

Sarfaraz Khan, etched in the cricketing minds since breaking the highest score record in the Harris Shield at the tender age of 12, has finally realized his dream of donning the Indian Test cap. The journey from that record-breaking innings to representing the country took 14 years, three months, and ten days. However, it wasn’t just Sarfaraz’s journey; it was a shared dream with his father and coach, Naushad Khan.

A Father’s Aspiration

Naushad Khan, fondly known as “abbu” to Sarfaraz, has been a constant presence on this cricketing odyssey. From the early days of school cricket to the pinnacle of international cricket, Naushad stood by his son. Sarfaraz reminisced about his younger days, “My father was telling me I should try and better Tendulkar’s score.”

The aspiration was set early, and the road ahead was destined to be long and winding.

The Wait and Patience

The moment of reckoning arrived on February 15, 2024, at the Niranjan Shah Stadium. Sarfaraz, with an impressive first-class average of 70, had played 45 first-class games before earning his India call-up. The wait was filled with frustration, but Naushad emphasized the perspective gained during this period.

“Raat ko waqt do guzarne ke liye, sooraj apne hi samay pe niklega” – Give the night’s passage its time. The sun will emerge in its own time.

An Unusual Debut

Sarfaraz’s debut wasn’t ordinary. Seated padded up for nearly four hours, he entered the field after a formidable partnership between Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja. His wait, however, extended as he sat on the sidelines, observing the game unfold.

“I was thinking I’ve had to be so patient through my life; let me show a little more patience now,” remarked Sarfaraz.

Meeting Pujara on Common Ground

While waiting, Sarfaraz spotted Cheteshwar Pujara, a stalwart in Test cricket, practicing for a Ranji Trophy game. Their stories, though different in style and temperament, were entwined with their fathers’ dreams. The stage was set for Sarfaraz to step onto Pujara’s turf, along with Jadeja, both having made significant contributions on the Niranjan Shah Stadium.

Bindaas Approach Against Spin

Facing England’s spin challenge head-on, Sarfaraz’s bindaas approach came to the forefront. As the fielders crowded in, he seized the opportunity, sweeping Joe Root behind square and in front of square for four fours in four overs.

Sarfaraz’s fearless play, coupled with his ability to manipulate the crease, showcased his immense skill against spin.

Defining Shots and Cheeky Plays

While the defining shot might not have been a boundary, Sarfaraz’s flamboyant turn of wrists to send a legbreak rolling through backward square leg left an indelible mark. The innings was a blend of cheeky and exhilarating plays, with a one-of-a-kind talent rushing towards destiny.

The Unfortunate Mix-Up

However, the debut innings concluded with an unfortunate mix-up, a theme that has occasionally shadowed Jadeja’s career. As Jadeja fell short of the crease, Sarfaraz walked off, glancing back once. Such mix-ups, as Sarfaraz acknowledged, are part and parcel of the game.

A Dream Fulfilled

Reflecting on the poignant moment, Sarfaraz shared, “It was abbu’s dream first that he would play for India.” Despite initial challenges, the dream realized its manifestation through Sarfaraz. The proudest moment of his life, he concluded, was a testament to his father’s unwavering support and hard work.

Final Word:

In the book of Indian cricket, Sarfaraz Khan’s journey from a young prodigy to a Test debutant stands as a proof to dreams shared, aspirations fulfilled, and the unyielding support of a father. As the sun sets on his debut day, a new chapter begins in the story of Sarfaraz and his abbu.