Mumbai pacer Shardul Thakur, who was picked in India's Test squad for the West Indies tour, celebrated his selection at his Swami Vivekanand International School ground and at school coach Dinesh Lad's residence in Borivli yesterday.
Shardul Thakur (right) shares a piece of cake with his school coach Dinesh Lad to celebrate his selection in the Indian team
Shardul was pleased to see the students celebrating by distributing sweets to welcome their own India player. "It's amazing. It makes me remember my school days. This gives me great joy. I still remember my first day here 10 years ago. I was very nervous and afraid of facing Lad sir," Shardul told mid-day.
At Lad's residence, there was more than one reason to celebrate — Shardul's selection and the 24th birthday of his Mumbai teammate Siddhesh Lad, who is Dinesh's son.
"Shardul is a quality cricketer and that's why he has been picked for India. He just needs to focus on his task now," said his coach Dinesh.
Thakur's selection coincided with the birthday of his Mumbai teammate Siddhesh Lad (left), who is Dinesh's son. Pics/Subodh Mayure
Though Thakur has performed well in first-class cricket over the last couple of seasons, the India call-up came as a little surprise.
"I was hoping for a call-up even before, but as you know the Indian team have good fast bowlers. I am very happy. I don't know how to deal with it. This is the proudest moment of my life. I can't describe my feelings," said Shardul, who has claimed 133 wickets in 37 first-class matches — 89 of those in the last two seasons.
Chairman of selectors Sandeep Patil addresses the media after selecting the Indian team for the Zimbabwe and West Indies tours at the BCCI headquarters in Churchgate yesterday. Pic/Atul Kamble
Only recently, he was released by Indian Premier League team Kings XI Punjab, something which left him disappointed.
However, he said yesterday: "IPL is not the ultimate thing. I think getting selected for the India Test team is the best thing for me. It was my dream and it has finally come true, so I am not thinking about not getting an opportunity in the IPL."