Medium pacer Aashit Jaiswar's all-round performance (2-11 and an unbeaten 20 runs) helped Gujarat reach the semi-final of the Mumbai Mayor Cricket Cup for the disabled at Shivaji Park ground yesterday. They beat Kalyan XI by 35 runs.
Aashit Jaiswar. Pic/SuresH KK
Electing to bat, Gujarat scored 76-4 in the stipulated eight overs. Later, a hat-trick by medium pacer Sunil Waghela (3-5) and Jaiswar's two wickets saw Kalyan XI finishing at 41-9.
Jaiswar, who was born with deformed fingers on his left hand and sunken-chest (people born with a concave chest wall), never let his disability get in the way of his cricketing dreams.
"I do not consider myself disabled. I used to play tennis-ball cricket two years ago as I wasn't aware about handicapped cricket. My disability has indeed given me strength," said the Virat Kohli fan.
The Ahmedabad-based Jaiswar wants to finish his education to give his parents a better life. "I want to finish my education as I know that playing handicap cricket is not going to earn me a livelihood.
My father is a small-time furniture contractor. I want to his business grow to ensure a better life. Side-by-side I would also continue playing cricket."
Former India captain Ajit Wadekar inaugurated the tournament. Twenty-eight teams including 300 players from Mumbai, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Karnataka are participating in the event.