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All-rounder Sumit is shines in 'special' tournament

Savitribai Phule Special Childrens School’s Anchewar shines with bat and ball at tournament organised by Association for the Welfare of Persons with Mental Handicap

Sumit Anchewar’s all-round performance of (29 runs & 5-19) stood out as Savitribai Phule Special Childrens school (Bhiwandi) won the 9th AWMH (Association for the Welfare of Persons with Mental Handicap) Maharashtra state cricket tournament for special schools in the Lower Ability ‘A’ group at Goregaon Sports Club yesterday.


Top team: The Savitribai Phule Special Childrens School team after winning the  9th Association for the Welfare of Persons with Mental Handicap Maharashtra state cricket tournament at Goregaon Sports Club yesterday. Pics/Pradeep Dhivar.

The Bhiwandi school defeated Swami Parijnanashram Educational & Vocational Centre for the Handicapped (Virar) by six wickets. Sumit, a right-hand batsman and medium pacer was adjudged man of the tournament.


Sumit Anchewar of Savitribai Phule Special Childrens School, Bhiwandi

For 22-year-old Sumit, who suffers from moderate mental retardation (Intelligence Quotient level of 45. Normal IQ for most kids is 100, while extremely intelligent children have an IQ above 100) cricket is very close to his heart. He began playing cricket eight years ago as a bi-weekly activity under the watchful eyes of his school coach Raghunath Wagh. Soon it became his passion.


Paresh Patil of Swami Parijnanashram Educational & Vocational Centre for the Handicapped, Virar took 4-5 off 1.3 overs and was adjudged best bowler in the Lower Ability category

“To get these kids involved in sport, we started teaching them the basics of cricket. Sumit was very good at throwing the ball. So we later began teaching him the finer aspects of the game and he picked it up well. Sumit loves painting too,” said Wagh, as he went on to explain just how difficult it is to train children like Sumit: “If you have to teach a normal child how to bat or bowl, you might need to instruct him five to 10 times. But with these children, we have repeat the same instruction a 100 times. Patience is the key to handle these children. Today, I am proud of our team. For us (coaches of special children) it is not about winning or losing because most of these kids don’t even know what winning and losing is,” said Wagh.

Sumit adores former India batting icon Sachin Tendulkar and left-arm pacer Zaheer Khan. “I love watching Zaheer and Sachin sir on TV. Every time I see their photographs in the newspaper, I cut it and stick it in a book,” he said.

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