After Test call-up, Sarfaraz Khan hopes to join league of legends Richards, Kohli, Miandad | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: While Sarfaraz Khan‘s impressive run tally in the domestic circuit may have been the key that opened the doors of Indian cricket for him, his thirst for learning remains unquenchable.
His ambition extends beyond just making it to the national team; he aspires to stand shoulder to shoulder with cricket legends such as Virat Kohli, Viv Richards, and Javed Miandad.
Recently called up to the Indian squad for the second Test against England in Visakhapatnam, stepping in for the injured KL Rahul and Ravindra Jadeja, Sarfaraz shared his admiration for the learning journey he has embarked upon.
“I like to watch Virat Kohli, AB de Villiers, Sir Vivian Richards, and even Javed Miandad because my dad has told me that I play like him. I watch Joe Root‘s batting also.
“Anyone who is succeeding, I am watching them to see how they are doing it so I can learn and apply it. I want to continue doing this, whether it’s in the Ranji Trophy or playing for India in the future,” Sarfaraz told JioCinema.
Naushad Ahmed – Sarfaraz’s real-life hero
But then there is a real-life hero for Sarfaraz — his father Naushad Ahmed — who dedicated countless hours to make his son a cricketer.
“My father introduced me to cricket, and I always wondered why am I even playing. I am an attacking batsman and I used to get out sooner than others and scoring big runs was getting difficult.
“It was disheartening to see others succeed while I wouldn’t be among the runs. But my dad always believed in hard work, and everything I have is a result of that work,” said Sarfaraz.
In the 2015-2016 domestic season, Sarfaraz opted to play for Uttar Pradesh after he ran into trouble with Mumbai selectors during an under-19 game.
Sarfaraz said his dad would travel to UP or wherever the team played to watch him bat.
“Even when I moved from Mumbai to UP, he would take flights to come and see me. He would start bowling to me on the terrace or the road itself before selection trials.
“Now I realise the impact and importance of those efforts,” he added.
During the 2015-2016 domestic season, Sarfaraz chose to represent Uttar Pradesh after facing issues with the Mumbai selectors during an under-19 game.
Sarfaraz revealed that his father went the extra mile, literally, as he would travel to Uttar Pradesh or wherever the team played just to witness his son showcase his batting skills.
“When I came back to Mumbai from UP, I was scared if this would bring a halt to my career and I strongly felt there was no future ahead of me.
“But my dad always stood by me. There’s no guarantee in life if you don’t get opportunities,” he said.
‘I play 500-600 balls every day’
Despite facing challenges earlier, Sarfaraz found ample opportunities in Mumbai, where his cricketing career flourished. Currently, he boasts an impressive record with 3912 runs from 45 First-Class matches, maintaining a stellar average of 69.85. His remarkable tally includes 14 centuries and 11 fifties.
In the red-ball format, Sarfaraz exhibits exceptional performance with a striking average of 70.48, solidifying his status as a standout performer.
So, how does he score so consistently? Sarfaraz revealed the secret.
“My strength is that I am not easily satisfied. I play 500-600 balls every day. If I don’t play at least 200-300 balls in a match, I feel like I haven’t done much. It’s a habit now.
“If you want to play five-day cricket, you have to stay patient and practice every day. I play cricket all day and that’s why I can stay on the pitch for a long time,” Sarfaraz added.
(With PTI inputs)

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