New Delhi. Former Indian bowling coach Bharat Arun has recently shared a new story about Mohammad Siraj. This story related to Mohammad Siraj has come in front of the world for the first time. Bharat Arun has told how the pacer was bombarding him with questions about his chances of making it to the senior team when he was playing matches for India A. Bharat Arun was part of the Indian coaching staff when Ravi Shastri was the head coach. The team captained by Virat Kohli had taken the team to heights by winning some memorable victories.
In Cricbuzz’s special show ‘Rise of New India’, Bharat Arun told that he had spotted this young pacer when he was playing for Royal Challengers Bangalore. The year was 2015. When he was a net bowler. Siraj impressed Bharat Arun, who spoke to VVS Laxman. At that time VVS Laxman was the mentor of Sunrisers Hyderabad. Bharat Arun told, “I first saw Siraj when I was the bowling coach of RCB. We were playing with Sunrisers and he came in as a net bowler. When I looked at him, he appeared sharp, very impressive, and I had to go myself to Laxman, to know about him.”
He further said, “I said – he is such a talented bowler. Is he playing any cricket in Hyderabad? Laxman said- Not that I can think of it, but if you are so impressed then I can recommend his name to the selectors. Then the matter ended there. After this, Bharat Arun joined Hyderabad’s Ranji team as a coach, but he did not forget Siraj. Bharat Arun recalled that young Siraj took 41 wickets for Hyderabad in Ranji Trophy 2016-17. But the former Indian bowling coach felt that he still needed some finishing.
Mohammad Siraj was a special player to help India win on Australian soil, but before that he was playing for India A. But along with this, he kept questioning Bharat Arun about his prospects in the senior team. Bharat Arun said, “After doing well for Hyderabad, I went and joined the Indian team. At that time Siraj was playing for India A. And whenever he used to perform well in a match, he would call me and ask – Sir, when are you calling me?” He further said, “Where do I ask him? And he would say – Sir in the Indian team. When will I get a chance? I used to tell him – take more wickets and when you impress on the India A tour, you will come here.
After impressing for India A and then doing well for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL, the youngster finally made his India debut in 2017. Arun recalled how the then Indian coach Ravi Shastri was impressed by Siraj’s self-belief. Since making his Test debut in 2020, this fast bowler has cemented his place in the Indian team.
FIRST PUBLISHED : February 22, 2023, 17:55 IST