Mohammed Siraj’s family members are overjoyed with his performance on Test debut. His brother Ismail said that Siraj has fulfilled their late father’s dream by playing Test cricket for India.
Siraj was one of the Indian heroes on the Boxing Day Test’s opening day between India and Australia at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).
The 26-year-old lost his father Mohammed Ghaus on November 20, around a week after the team landed in Australia. He couldn’t return due to the COVID-19 restrictions and as a result could not perform his father’s last rites.
“It was my (late) father’s dream that Siraj should represent India in Tests … he always wanted to see him (Siraj) in blue and white jersey to represent the nation, so our dream got fulfilled today,” Ismail told PTI from Hyderabad.
Siraj’s is another incredible rags-to-riches story. Ghaus, an auto-driver in Hyderabad, overcame several hardships to ensure his son got the best facilities. From making it to the Indian Premier League (IPL) to the limited-over internationals to Test cricket, Siraj’s journey is nothing short of a fairy-tale. Unfortunately, his father couldn’t witness the biggest moment of his son’s career.
A sleepless night for Mohammed Siraj’s family
The family spent a sleepless Christmas night after India announced on Friday that Mohammed Siraj would be debuting. They remained glued to their television set from 4 am.
“Since the team was announced yesterday, we knew that he was going to make debut. We did not sleep the entire night, we switched on TV from 4 am,” said Ismail, who is a software professional and also manages his brother.
The family spent some anxious moments after Mohammed Siraj did not get an opportunity to bowl in the first session. The ‘proud moment’ arrived in the second session as he led the charge. He returned with figures of 2/40 claiming a well-set Marnus Labuschagne and later all-rounder Chris Green.
Ismail didn’t disturb his brother by calling him. However, he confirmed that Mohammed Siraj had called up their Ammi (mother) after the day’s play.
Australia were bowled out for 195 and India ended the day at 36/1, trailing by 159 runs.