Siraj’s international debut: Mohammed Siraj makes public how Kohli aided him ahead of his international debut last year.
Mohammed Siraj, who made his T20I debut against New Zealand last year, has now been included in India’s Test team to take on West Indies in the upcoming home series. Siraj, 24, has been rewarded for his consistent performance in the domestic circuit and while representing India A.
Most recently, Siraj had registered career-best First-class bowling figures of 19.3-7-59-8 against Australia A. It was on the back of this and other clinical performances that he was named in the Test side.
Talking about his maiden Test call-up in an interview with Times of India, Siraj was quoted, “It is a dream come true for me. I wanted to represent my country in Tests and knew I will be able to impress the selectors someday. I am so happy. I have done well for India A recently and had an idea about my selection in the Test team.”
Siraj had made his T20I debut under Virat Kohli and if he sneaks into the playing eleven in this series, his Test debut would also happen under Kohli. Siraj expressed approval of captain Kohli, stating that he had motivated him to a large extent before the match against New Zealand.
“When I was selected for T20Is against New Zealand last year, I had a chat with Kohli bhai. I was nervous. He said ‘Tension mat le, ground pe baat karenge. Bas ready reh kal khelne ke liye’ (Don’t worry, we will talk on the field. Just be ready for your debut match)”, Siraj added.
Upon meeting at the ground, Kohli once again eased Siraj’s nerves, making the rookie bowlers extremely comfortable and taking all the pressure away from him. “When I hit the field, he said… I have seen your game. Just go and bowl the way you have been. Don’t experiment. He took away the pressure. I was delighted after dismissing New Zealand captain Kane Williamson to claim my first international wicket”, Siraj further said.
Earlier, Siraj had revealed as to how former India captain and current wicket-keeper batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s advice aided him to step up his game.
Below are some of the recent Twitter reactions on Siraj:
Mohammed Siraj needs three more wickets to complete 100 FC wickets. The pacer has taken 97 wickets in only 20 FC games at an average of 18.92. #INDvWI
More approaching milestones here: https://t.co/MZzHgQ7bSs
— Sport (@CricketUrdu) October 1, 2018
Mohammed Siraj has been in great form having picked up 40 wickets in nine first class innings. https://t.co/awwMkDq0tW
— crictoday (@crictoday) October 1, 2018
This was a long time coming! After bagging 40 odd wickets in his previous two series playing for 🇮🇳 A, Mohammed Siraj has earned his maiden Test team call-up for the series against Windies. 👏🏼 #PlayBold #INDvWI pic.twitter.com/VaE8woYNNW
— Royal Challengers (@RCBTweets) October 1, 2018
— MyNation (@MyNation) October 1, 2018
It is a dream come true for me. I wanted to represent my country in Tests and knew I will be able to impress the selectors someday. I am so happy. I have done well for India A recently and had an idea about my selection in the Test team,” #MohammedSiraj #INDvsWI
— Mohammed Hafeez (@hafeezmohammed0) October 1, 2018