Meet Abhilash from Nagpur, India.
It hasn’t been long since I first saw him on a chilly December morning last year. I was finishing my warmup and was heading towards the nets, when I saw him talking with the coach.
I’ll never forget what the coach said to him. This were his exact words- “I don’t think you should ever handle a leather ball. You’re better off concentrating on your studies.”
The guy nodded to this and was about to leave via the back gate. I don’t know what got into me and I approached him. I asked him whether he would like to play with me for a while in the nets. He delightfully agreed and followed me. He told me that he specialised in off spin so I handed him a soiled, old leather ball.
Now I did all of this just because I felt bad for him and wanted to make him feel good.
Thank the Heavens I did what i did!
I got all padded up and signaled him. He began his run up and those few seconds of run up brought back tons of memories from around a decade ago!
He was actually bowling just like the legendary off spinner of Sri Lanka, Muralitharan!
After 5 minutes and some 15 amazingly lethal off spins later, I knew that this guy was something special.
I asked him whether he would like to get his action recorded for everyone to see. He nodded with a smile on his face.
- Over the course of the next 2 days, I recorded him on the nets, all behind the trainer’s back. I didn’t waste much time, compiled his best deliveries, and uploaded them on Youtube for the whole world to see and be completely awestruck! Today, he has around 3000 views and is gaining attention that he totally deserves.
This incident made me realise one thing- How many talented performers are getting lost in obscurity everyday in India just because even the most experienced and knowledgeable coaches ignore such gifted talents?