Sarfaraz Khan and Arman Jaffer speak about bonding in school and playing together in U-19 World Cup
Sarfaraz Khan and Arman Jaffer are as different as two human beings can be, but share three vital points of similarity – they both held the record of scoring the highest individual runs in school cricket; both played for Rizvi Springfield; and are both part of the Under-19 World Cup scheduled to begin this month in Bangladesh.
While the 18-year-old Sarfaraz is known to be socially outgoing, even sharing friendships with RCB teammates Chris Gayle and AB de Villiers over the social media, Arman, who is one year younger, is known to not even use Whatsapp or Facebook to communicate with his friends.
The biggest similarity between Sarfaraz and Arman, on the other hand, is that they both score runs like nobody else’s business, despite their contrasting approach to scoring them. Sarfaraz scored an individual highest score of 439 in an inter-school match in 2009, only to see his national record beaten by a patient 498 by Arman in 2010.
While Arman got his debut call-up to wear India colours recently, Sarfaraz has been an oft-heard name for the last couple of years.
The two youngsters, India flagbearers on whom much hope is vested for the January world event, interacted with The Mirror, talking about each other, their relation, and how their schooldays had been.
We never used to rotate strike in school: Arman
On Arman, Sarfaraz said, “We hope the partnership that started in school carries on till the highest level. He is a confident player. He will stand there waiting for the loose ball and play at the last minute.
“I am an attacking player and but at times get out early. I need to learn patience from him. Besides the straight drive, I want to learn the khaandani flick shot from him.
“During exam time in school, if I didn't understand a question, I would copy it from Arman, not always, but sometimes. I learn a lot from him as a roommate too. He's quite, focused and prepares well before a game. He doesn't leave his bat. Even when he goes to someone else's room or sleeps.”
The more reserved Arman said about his friend Sarfaraz, “He is very good with the sweep shot. He likes to dominate the bowlers which disrupts their line and length making things easy and also helps taking pressure off me. We have a good chemistry and bonding between us.
“We never used to rotate strike in school, and we hope to continue this for the Indian team too”, he menacingly signed off. The story that their coach revealed as to why the two never rotated the strike while batting is that they would only score in boundaries, not needing to run between wickets.
They are hardly the first cricketing prodigy duo that have come up from Mumbai schools, and it is likely that Sarfaraz Khan and Arman Jaffer have a lot of cricket to play and records to break in the next decade or two.