He has battled against all odds to emerge victorious. Once suspected to have links with militants, this Jammu and Kashmir youth on Wednesday realised his dream of playing for India.
For Parvez Rasool, the recognition in the shape of a call-up for the India ‘A’ versus England one-day match here this month is a huge step.
Three years ago, Karnataka Police had detained Parvez when some traces of explosives were allegedly found in his kit bag. A Champions League match was scheduled at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore and Parvez, part of the J&K under-22 team and staying in the vicinity, saw his world crumbling.
The police, however, corrected their mistake and Parvez was back on the field in good time. He has only grown as a cricketer since that dark day in Bangalore.
Parvez’s highest score this season was 171 against Goa. His best show with the ball was seven for 41 against Assam in a match that saw him notch up an unbeaten 120 too. At 23, this off-spinner surely promises to develop into a quality all-rounder.
“He’s very promising,” said Bishan Singh Bedi when he learnt of Parvez’s selection. “Last year I said he was a better off-spinner than many and that put him under pressure. I withdrew my words so that he could go about his way comfortably. I’m happy to note that he has performed like a champion this season with the bat and the ball,” said Bedi, the all-rounder’s coach at Jammu and Kashmir.
What delights Bedi the most is that Parvez has a “clean” action. “No doubt about that. The best part of it is that he doesn’t bowl with full sleeves,” the hearty laughter confirms Bedi’s reading about the “young lad.” Parvez was happy being a batsman but thanks to Bedi’s guidance realised his bowling potential too.
Bedi is convinced Parvez has a lot of cricket in him. “He’s amazingly disciplined and dedicated and such a humble kid. He needs proper exposure. Someone has to work with him. I know he has amazing talent,” said the former India captain.
Parvez is acknowledged as a cricketer with a future on the domestic circuit. “He’s a very good striker of the ball (594 runs with two centuries) and a genuine tweaker of the ball (33 wickets at 18.09). You can see the ball spinning like a top when he tosses it up. I would request everyone to be patient with him. Also, he should be preserved for the longer version of the game and kept away from one-dayers and T20. I see a quality all-rounder in this boy,” said Bedi.
Parvez Rasool is an ideal ambassador for the game in a State where even first-class cricketers are not provided woollens by its association. The warmth comes from performers like him.