U-19 world cup: Sandeep,Passi gives Punjab reasons to smile
As soon as the Indian under-19 cricket team achieved the victory target to grab the World Cup in Australia, it was celebration time at the residences of pace bowlers Kamal Passi and Sandeep Sharma. Drumbeats, crackers, congratulatory calls and visitors thronged their houses as soon as people witnessed the proud moment.
Slogans of 'chak de India' and 'World Cup hamara hai' were heard in every nook and corner of the street where these pace bowler lives.
Pawan Nagar of Amritsar district, the residence of Kamal Passi,came alive as residents rejoiced victory of the nation in which their very own lad had contributed significantly.
Passi took ten wickets in the tournament and was part of the playing eleven in the final against Australia.
The family members of Kamal struggled to control emotions as the Indian team lifted the World Cup. "We were glued to the television since 4 in the morning and praying for India's victory. I am very happy for the entire team," said Kamal's father Kewal Kishan Passi.
"It is a big day in my life. My son has made all of us proud. The entire team played exceptionally well in the World Cup and that's the reason they are champions now," he said.
Kishan said Kamal's grandfather had played a key role in making him a cricketer. "My father was a groundsman and he was Kamal's inspiration for taking up the game," he added.
Distributing sweets with a beaming smile on her face, Kamal's mother Sunita said, "We just can't believe this has happened. The entire team played brilliant game. I am very proud of my son desperately waiting for him to come home," adding that her son had worked very hard to make a place in the team.
Terming this as the best rakhi gift, Shabnam, sister of Kamal, said, "kamal's busy schedule kept him away form home even on important festivals. He was not with me on this raksha bandhan also. But today he has given me the best gift."
Residents of the area continued to pour in outside the fast bowler's house dancing on the beats of 'dhol'. The residents said this victory had made them feel special because Kamal lived there.
Kamal is a student of local Hindu College.
Similar was the atmosphere in Anand Nagar area situated on the outskirts of Patiala where the proud family of Sandeep Sharma resides. The family had reasons to smile, as Sandeep was the most successful bowler who got four for 54, as India Under-19 lifted their third World Cup trophy after beating Australia by six wickets in the final on Sunday.
'The foundation of victory has been laid by 'Sandy' (Nick name of Sandeep) when he bowled out Jimmy Peirson on a duck, the opening batsman of Australia in fourth ball of the opening spell of India', Ranjeet, Sandeep's elder brother said . He again striked again and sent back the other opening batsman Cameron Bancroft on just two runs in his second over, he added.
Jubilant Ranjeet credited Sandeep's success to his hard work and dedication towards the game.
Sandeep has four brothers and he is on number three. All of them started dancing when they came to know about India's victory.They distributed sweets and started dancing on the beats of Dhol.
Our neighbours and relatives have started visiting us for conveying congratulations, said Balwinder Sharma, Sandeep's father an agriculturist at a village near Naina Wati, while Sandeep's mother said that all the family gathered in front of TV for viewing match around 4am.
Sandeep has been studying in Government Multipurpose School and was trained under the supervision of coach Kanwaljeet Singh and later on by the PCA.
It was Sandeep's swinging deliveries that helped India clinch the quadrangular series in Australia a few months back. Sandeep Sharma has played for the India Under-19 side since 2009-10 and has 34 wickets against his name from 21 matches. The medium pacer has also been part of the Punjab Ranji team. He was picked in the India squad for the Under-19 World Cup in 2010.