New Delhi: It happens only in India where a cricketer, who will be soon donning the national colours, is not being provided with a proper training facility in his own backyard and has to pay from his own pocket to get one.
The disappointment in Kedar Jadhav's voice was palpable even as he got the news of his maiden call-up in the national team for the tour of Bangladesh next month. "I have represented Deccan Gymkhana Club in Pune for the past 14 years. Yet, they have refused to prepare a pitch so that I can have proper net sessions ahead of Bangladesh tour. Today, I have got India call-up, played for the 'A' team and IPL starting from this club. But I guess they are not happy with my progress," a dejected Jadhav told PTI on Thursday.
Asked how was he planning to train for the next two weeks before embarking on tour of Bangladesh, Kedar's reply was even more surprising. "I am paying a monthly fees of Rs 18,000 to 22-Yards cricket academy where there is a proper pitch. I don't know how may cricketers who get selected for India get this treatment in their own state," a livid Jadhav said.
The 29-year-old, who was one of the better performers in Delhi Daredevils' disastrous campaign, doesn't hide his displeasure of not being given chance to bat higher up the order in the initial games.
"Actually, the logo on your chest matters!" he said with sarcasm. "If you have that India logo, you are bound to be taken more seriously. Hopefully, after I play for India, I will also get a chance to bat higher up the order in IPL. I would also like to get a chance to play more deliveries to showcase my abilities," said Jadhav, who has scored a mammoth 1223 runs in Ranji Trophy this season.
Jadhav was always confident after the last season that the selectors will reward him for his good show. "I was confident that I will be playing for India one day. My immediate goal is to do well and cement my place in the limited overs side. There are two aspects of representing the national side -- playing for India and playing long enough for India. I want to play long enough for India. "I want to use this opportunity to stake a claim for the England ODIs also," said Jadhav.
Exactly when did he feel that he is ready for the next level, Jadhav answered: "The match-winning century against Mumbai at the Wankhede in the Ranji Trophy quarter-final gave me a lot of confidence. Beating Mumbai in Mumbai in a quarter-final with no big stars was a great achievement for us." Jadhav also cited a couple of more knocks against quality oppositions that brought him into national reckoning.
"Apart from that, I scored a triple century (327 off 317 balls) against UP in Ranji Trophy, a year before that. A half-century for India A against England at Palam ground were some of the knocks that gave me immense satisfaction. I believe I can play both forms of the game with same confidence. In IPL, if you look at my scores, I have always tried to contribute in limited span of time," the stocky right-hander said.