Mumbai cricketer Tushar Deshpande suffered the tragic loss of his mother on Tuesday, but the youngster has decided to step out for his team in the Super League stage of the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy on Friday.
The fast-bowler’s mother, who was being treated for ovarian cancer since the past two years, passed away at the Fortis Hospital in Mulund early on Tuesday.
Mumbai take on Karnataka at the Holkar stadium in Indore on Friday. And despite his grief, Deshpande has decided to play the all-important match.
“Thoughts about mummy will definitely come, but my mom wanted me to play well and nothing else. If I stop right now, then there’s no point,” the 23-year-old was quoted as saying by crictracker.com.
“She was unable to cope up with the chemotherapy. She had already undergone 24 chemotherapy sessions and it was not agreeing with her. I was very attached to her like every son would be. For the last month, she was not talking at all. Having a mother is the biggest gift, whether she talks or not,” he added.
Deshpande’s courage reminds one of the time a young Virat Kohli had shown similar strength. The Indian captain had stepped out on the field for his state side Delhi and scored 91 crucial runs despite his father having passed away the previous night.
Meanwhile, middle-order batsman Shreyas Iyer will be leading Mumbai in the tournament.
Senior batsman Ajinkya Rahane had led Mumbai in the league stage of the domestic T20 tournament, but “he is not available for the knockout stage”, a source in the Mumbai Cricket Association said, ruling out reports that the Test specialist was carrying a niggle.
Rahane was, in fact, busy training with the Rajasthan Royals all through this week. The Royals conducted a preparatory camp at the Cricket Club of India in Mumbai ahead of the Indian Premier League 2019.
Mumbai and Railways were the two teams that qualified from Group C in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. Co-incidentally Mumbai played all its league matches in Indore.
Rising star Prithvi Shaw, along with Siddhesh Lad, Jay Bista and the experienced duo of Aditya Tare and Surya Kumar Yadav have been named in the 15-member Mumbai squad announced on the MCA website.
The bowling attack will be spearheaded by pacer Dhawal Kulkarni and comprises Shardul Thakur, Deshpande, Royston Dias and Akash Parkar along with spinners Dhurmil Matkar and Shams Mulani.
Shreyas Iyer (captain),Dhawal Kulkarni, Shardul Thakur, Siddhesh Lad, Jay Bista, Prithvi Shaw, Suryakumar Yadav, Tushar Deshpande, Aditya Tare, Eknath Kerkar, Shubham Ranjane, Akash Parkar, Shams Mulani, Dhrumil Matkar and Royston Dias.
[With inputs from PTI]