Sourav Ganguly is going to try his hardest to put it across Kings XI Punjab on Saturday. If he doesn’t, the Knight Riders skipper knows that one of his fans – perhaps the biggest – will need to pop in a sleeping pill to get over the anguish of the loss.
Even as the players will troop off to IPL night parties after the match—regardless of the outcome — the grieving 18-year-old Mandeep Singh just can’t go to sleep if his idol ends up losing the game.
That he’s suffering from fatal muscular dystrophy, which has paralyzed him below his neck and confined to a wheelchair for the last eight years, makes his tale even more heart warming.
The handicap, however, meant nothing when he saw a chance to meet Ganguly. His family drove him down from Ludhiana — his hometown — to Chandigarh on Thursday, hoping to fulfill his long-nourished desire.
“He has wanted to meet Ganguly for a long time. He doesn’t have much time left, so for us it was kind of his last wish that we wanted to fulfill at any cost,” said his father Inderjit Sandhu.
They had tried to meet Ganguly last year as well, but couldn’t get through the security blanket. This time, however, the child’s wish was fulfilled, thanks to a Police officer Sanjeev Kumar and the team’s local liaison manager Sushil Kapoor.
The men conveyed the message to Ganguly and the player was happy to spend some time with his diehard fan.
“I am very happy. He signed a bat for me and wished me ‘all the best,’” Mandeep said over the phone.
“He hasn’t put the bat aside even for a second since Ganguly signed it for him, and loaded the photograph on his laptop the moment he reached home,” added the father.