ITDC INDIA EPRESS/ ITDC NEWS It is a well-known fact among the fans of Mahendra Singh Dhoni that he worked as a ticket collector at the Kharagpur railway station, before he stepped into the big league. The former India skipper could not juggle with cricket and work for long and gave up the job to focus on cricket. The rest is history.
Now, another ticket collector is on the rise on the cricket field. Pacer Himanshu Sangwan, who is playing for Railways in his debut Ranji Trophy season, rattled a strong Mumbai side with a five-wicket haul in the second innings to help his team to a 10-wicket win.
His 5/60 included scalps like Prithvi Shaw and Ajinkya Rahane. What makes his performance remarkable is that it is his debut Ranji Trophy season, and the 24-year-old Delhi lad has already taken 12 wickets in three first-class matches (four against Uttar Pradesh and two against Saurashtra, before the Mumbai match), and 14 wickets in eight List A matches.
The 41-time Ranji Trophy champions, Mumbai, were bowled out 114 in the first innings, thanks to a six-wicket haul by Sangwan's pace partner, T. Pradeep. Railways responded with 266, taking a 152-run lead. Sangwan then took over in the second innings, bowling out Mumbai for 198.
Before the Ranji debut, he took 37 wickets in seven matches in the C.K. Nayudu Trophy, an Under-23 tournament.
So, what the secret to his rapid rise? MRF Pace Foundation and his idol Australian pace legend Glenn McGrath, he said in an interview. Sangwan picked up valuable tips from him during a short stint at the academy in March this year.
He bowled under McGrath's supervision and the former Aussie pacer watched Sangwan's videos, too, and offered him technical help and also motivated him.
Sangwan said in the interview that McGrath advised him to be patient and stick to his basics. The Railways pacer is now reaping the benefits of paying heed to the advice.