Best birthday gift I could have asked for: Harmeet Singh
Harmeet Singh, who has been rewarded with a place in the Rest of India squad for Irani Cup as well as India 'B' squad for the Challenger Trophy after his fine performance in the U-19 World Cup, considered his selections as a fine belated best birthday gift
The rookie left-arm spinner celebrated his 20th birthday on September 7.
“It is the best birthday gift I could have asked for. It is a big break for me and it is important to stay calm, and focus on doing the right things in the match,” Harmeet told MiD DAY yesterday.
The Mumbaikar is making a conscious effort not get overawed by all the hype and attention he’s getting at the moment. “I know there is a lot of talk around the u-19 cricketers. It feels good, but my main goal is to make the senior team. I am well aware of the fact that if I keep performing well, people will talk.
“But once I stop performing, nobody will bother. My focus is completely on my game and training. I want to keep doing well. I was back to training after a three-day break (after returning from Australia) because of jetlag. I can’t afford to relax,” the Borivli lad said.
Harmeet, who took six wickets in four matches and made a crucial unbeaten 13 against Pakistan in the U-19 World Cup semi-final win, said he was a surprised to make it in both squads (Irani Cup and India ‘B’). “I am a bit surprised to get selected in both squads. I was expecting to get selected for Irani Cup,” he said.
Selector Mohinder Amarnath at the Cricket Centre yesterday. Pic/Suresh KK
Irani Cup (vs Ranji champions Rajasthan from Sept 21 in Bangalore)
Rest of India: Cheteshwar Pujara (Captain), Murali Vijay, Ajinkya Rahane, Subramanium Badrinath, Dinesh Karthik, Wriddhiman Saha, Yusuf Pathan, Pragyan Ojha, Parvinder Awana, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Shikhar Dhawan, Stuart Binny, Abhimanyu Mithun, Harmeet Singh.
NKP Salve Challenger Trophy (vs Bengal, Vijay Hazare Trophy winners, from Sept 29, Rajkot)
India ‘A’: S Badrinath (Captain), Ajinkya Rahane, Shikhar Dhawan, Robin Uthappa, Dinesh Karthik, Manish Pandey, Yusuf Pathan, Ishant Sharma, Parvinder Awana, Abhimanyu Mithun, Pragyan Ojha, Iqbal Abdulla, Harshal Patel,
India ‘B’: Cheteshwar Pujara (captain), Murali Vijay, S Anirudh, Kedar Jadhav, Robin Bist, Stuart Binny, Ravindra Jadeja, Baba Aparajith, Praveen Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Munaf Patel, Harmeet Singh, Rohit Motwani, Sandeep Sharma.