Krunal Pandya recalls how former India coach John Wright spotted him and Hardik
Allrounders Hardik Pandya and Krunal Pandya have become mainstays in the Indian cricket team. While the former suffered a back injury and had to undergo a surgery in August last year, Krunal continued to feature in the T20I team for India. Hardik was included in the squad for the ODI series against South Africa last month, but it was suspended due to the outbreak of coronavirus pandemic.
The duo were also expected to feature for Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League, but the tournament was also postponed till April 15. Even though the two brothers are vastly popular among Indian cricketing fans, they had quite a humble beginning. Speaking to Cricbuzz on a Youtube chat show, Krunal recalled how former India coach John Wright, who was with Mumbai Indians at the time, spotted the two during a Syed Mushtaq Ali match.
“Back in the day, there was a government recruitment speed post job and I received a letter for trials. My father told me that it’s a good opportunity, you may earn Rs 15-20k a month, so you should go and try it out. At the same time, I also had trial games coming up for Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy for Baroda team. I thought that I have worked so hard for the past 2-3 years and I have become a new player.
“So I thought I didn’t work hard for a speed post job. I did it to become a cricketer. So, I tore down the letter and threw it away, and decided to go for the trials. I went for the trials and I performed really well. I got selected for Baroda team. Hardik was already in the team. Syed Mushtaq matches were in Mumbai.
Coach John Wright spotted me and Hardik, and he saw that these two brothers are good talents - they can both bat and bowl. So from thereon, he followed us up, and our lives changed. I feel the letter that I threw away worked in my favour. If I hadnt played in the trial matches, our lives will be quite different,” Pandya said.