Hyderabad: For Hyderabad fast bowler Mohammed Siraj it was a huge moment when seasoned off spinner Ravichandran Ashwin handed over the Indian Test cap to him on the Boxing Day of the second Test at Melbourne Cricket Ground. “Coming over from first class grind and India A grind, you have earned this Test cap and value your cap,’’ said Ashwin to Siraj at the morning ceremony by the Indian team at the historic MCG.
The 26-year-old fast bowler thus became the 298th player to get the Indian cap. There were two debutants in this match with opener Shubman Gill becoming the 297th player.
Siraj, son of an autorickshaw driver, became the second Hyderabad fast bowler after Syed Abid Ali, who also made his debut against Australia at Adelaide way back in 1966-67 series, to play Test cricket for India.
But the debutant fast bowler had to wait till 28th over before stand-in skipper Ajinkya Rahane gave him the ball after the lunch session. In his fifth over, the new Indian speedster rattled the well-settled Marnus Labuschagne with a vicious bouncer that struck his helmet before landing over the slips.
BCCI shared the video of ceremony in their twitter handle with the caption, “He battled personal tragedy, fought adversity and is now rewarded with India’s Test Billed cap no. 298. Congratulations Mohammed Siraj. Go seize the day! #TeamIndia #AUSvIND”
— BCCI (@BCCI) December 25, 2020