Ashish Nehra hopes to make a comeback for the limited-overs series against England in early 2017
Indian cricket have had its share of players, who have not given up so easily when it came to quitting the game, as and when the run dried off the bat or the wickets didn’t come with the ball.
From an emotional point of view, fans remember Sourav Ganguly’s tryst and how he was treated towards the mid-2000s when a new coaching regime under Greg Chappell took over from John Wright.
In modern times, the eternal comeback man belongs to one man and he can have that tag with little doubts. Ashish Nehra has had a career that few would and at 37 when most start a second innings of their life, the left-arm pacer is looking to make a return to the national setup, once again.
“After my two recent surgeries, I was recuperating well and training at the National Cricket Academy when chikungunya struck. I somehow managed to fly back from Bangalore to Delhi in August.
"The month of September was very painful due to pain in joints. But now I am on the recovery path. I have started to train and would be spending November and December in becoming match fit," Nehra told The Times of India.
Nehra was brought back to the team for the T20Is in Australia at the start of 2016 and played for India in the shortest format until the World T20. Following that, he was part of the Sunrisers Hyderabad setup in the Indian Premie League, where he sustained an injury that forced him to miss the last bit of the League.
But now the Delhi cricketer is eyeing another run with the side and hopes to play in the limited-overs series against England early next year and added that he would also like to be a part of the ODI setup.
"My next goal is to achieve full fitness by January next year before the ODI and T20 series against England.
“I have been playing T20 cricket but am also ready for ODI cricket if the team feels that my services are needed. Thereafter, my next mission would be to play in the IPL 2017 after a few months of training," Nehra said.
At this stage of his career, it is hard to imagine Nehra continuing to play for India for a long time and he admitted that he was looking at short-term goals and added that he was willing to guide the upcoming crop of fast bowlers as well, if needed.
"Right now, I am enjoying the game and happy with the way I have progressed after two surgeries. I am working hard on my fitness and want to make a comeback for sure. But as I said earlier, I only talk about my short-term goals. If the team and selectors feel I am good enough to serve the country and also help the young bowlers, I am ready to do so," he said.
If the surgery to his foot was not enough, he also suffered a bout of Chikungunya during this phase and said that he was recovering well from it.