Akash Deep dedicates Test debut success to late father | Cricket News


NEW DELHI: India pace bowler Akash Deep made an emotional dedication after his impressive three-wicket burst on his Test debut, attributing his success to his late father.
Akash Deep revealed that his father, Ramji Singh, passed away in 2015, succumbing to paralysis. The emotional journey continued for the cricketer as he lost his elder brother within six months, while they were en route to a hospital in Varanasi.
This emotional journey adds another layer to Akash Deep’s cricketing journey, making his Test debut and delivering a splendid performance even more poignant. His dedication to his late father serves as a testament to the role of family and personal motivation in an athlete’s career.
“I thought I have to do something after I lost my dad and brother in one year, then I stepped out to play cricket. I had nothing to lose and everything to win,” Akash Deep told reporters after day one of the fourth Test against England in Ranchi.
The 27-year-old bowled a dream opening spell on Test debut, blowing away the England top-three en route his 3/70.
England went on to lose half their side for 112 at lunch on Friday.
“I dedicate this to my father because it was his dream that his son does something in life. I couldn’t do anything in his life (when he was alive), so this performance is for my father.
“Every cricketer has one dream, to play for India in Tests. That was also my dream,” said the Bengal pacer who hails from Baddi village in Rohtas district of Bihar, about 300km from Ranchi.
“We didn’t know about cricket while growing up; cricket was not there where I come from. I played tennis cricket after 2007 and got to know about cricket after 2016. Since then, I have been following (Mohammed) Shami bhai and (South Africa’s Kagiso) Rabada.
“I got my Test cap at a place which is near to my village (in Bihar) as well as Bengal from where I play. Bengal supported me well. In my journey, my family played a big role.
“My family is also here. No doubt, it’s an emotional feeling but there was just one thing going on in my mind — how to contribute to the team.”
On getting his Test cap from India coach Rahul Dravid, Akash Deep said, “He (Dravid) heard my story and I was very emotional (at the moment). I was just told to keep it simple, do whatever I have been doing (so far). It was a big help as, at this level, you sometimes get confused.”
Akash Deep also said that ace India pacer Jasprit Bumrah, who was rested for the fourth Test, too gave him advice on how to bowl in international cricket.
“Bumrah bhai told me that at the international level, one should bowl slightly back-of-a-length (deliveries) because batters tend to chase the ball. So, that was at the back of my mind and the plan was to bowl the right line and length,” Akash Deep told the host broadcasters earlier on Friday.
On his journey from making first-class debut in December 2019, he said, “I don’t know what I did, but whenever I used to play a match, I used to think that this is the last match of my life, and whenever I achieved success in a given match, I tried to incorporate that (method) in the next game.”
England rode on Joe Root’s patient unbeaten century to recover well in the post-lunch session to end the opening day at 302/7.
“At the start, bowlers got some help but after that when the wicket dried up, the ball also became very soft. The pitch is pretty slow. We are able to manage it (bowling) but I feel that as a bowling unit, we will have to focus on our line and length, keep it tight. If we make that effort we will get success.
“The bounce is the same but, I feel, we can keep the length away because the ball is coming onto the bat easily. it was a good wicket today.”
Akash Deep smashed Zak Crawley‘s off-stump in his second over of the day only for the umpire to signal a no-ball.
“I felt very bad. Not because it was my first international wicket. He (Zak Crawley) was playing very well, he was hitting the ball and I was feeling bad that the team should not suffer because of me. But, thankfully, he got out soon after,” added Akash Deep.
(With PTI inputs)


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