Abdul Samad, 18, a young talented cricketer today left for UAE to make his debut in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Originally from Kalakote village of Rajouri district, Samad is presently living in Jammu city along with his parents and a brother. Family of teenager Samad said that their son’s hard work finally paid off.
The IPL was supposed to be held last year but had to be postponed in the wake global pandemic—Covid-19. Samad’s father, Farooq Ahmed, a Physical Education Teacher in Jammu, said that had they stayed at Kalakote, his son would not have been able to achieve his goal, as per the local news agency KNO.
Samad after performing well in first class matches will now play for Sunrisers Hyderabad, who have already paid him his base price of Rs 20 Lakh in the auction in Kolkatta on December 19 last year.
Farooq said that since childhood his son was interested in Cricket. “I was also happy and satisfied to see him interested in cricket. I have myself been a player and a cricket lover,” said Farooq. “I am a master in the physical education department and have represented J&K at many platforms. That’s the reason why Samad remained in touch with cricket since childhood. I kept on guiding him through whatever means I could.”
Samad has performed well wherever he got opportunity and averaged 74 in first class matches including two centuries and many fifties. “After me, Samad was trained by his coach Randhir Singh who explored his talent and today result is before us,” said Farooq.
After the IPL was postponed, Samad was a bit disappointed he was confident of making his IPL debut as he knew he had talent. “My son has always been confident. I too was sure that he would get an opportunity one day. Today he has made me proud,” said Farooq amid a smile on his face.
Samad has passed class 12 last year and during the Covid-19 triggered lockdown, he played cricket with his father and brother. “My son is now pursuing a Bachelor’s degree,” Farooq said.
About Samad making his debut in IPL, Farooq said that all the family members were happy to hear about the news. “Now we are hopeful that he will perform well in the League,” he said.
Samad’s father also thanked former Cricketer Irfan Pathan for helping Samad at many levels that helped him to climb the ladder of success and grab the IPL opportunity.
Former Cricketer and J&K’s representative to BCCI Ranjeet Kalra said that he has been personally watching Samad playing cricket and is sure about his talent. “He is a very hard working and an extraordinary talent,” Kalra said.
He said that Samad has proved his credentials in the last first class season. “He is a hard hitter of the ball and is known for fire brand batting, something very essential for IPL type of cricket,” said Kalra.
Samad has left for UAE today. Kalra said Samad owes his success to legendary cricketer Irfan Pathaan who nurtured him from time to time and J&K team’s skipper Parvez Rasool.
Rasool, an only international player in J&K said that Samad has a talent and he likes to play hard hitting cricket. “He has played with me and his confidence level is very high,” he said. Samad is not the first player from J&K to play in the IPL. Before him, Parvaiz Rasool, Rasikh Salam, Mohammad Mudasir and Manzoor Pandav were picked up by teams, however, Mudasir and Pandav didn’t get any matches to play.