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Sarfaraz Khan gets unexpected phone call after blazing India debut: ‘Did I play well?’

Sarfaraz Khan was overwhelmed by the surprise he received after his memorable Test debut in the third India vs England Test at Rajkot.

Sarfaraz Khan was in for a pleasant surprise after the 26-year-old got his India career off to a rollicking start. Sarfaraz, who had long waited to play for India, realised his dream on Thursday when he was picked in the XI for the third Test against England in Rajkot. He made the occasion even more special by scoring a fifty on debut. Sarfaraz scored 66, way fewer runs than Rohit Sharma’s 131 and Ravindra Jadeja’s 110, but his innings almost overshadowed the knocks from his senior India teammates.

What a fine debut it was for Sarfaraz Khan. (AFP)

Sarfaraz scored his runs at a brisk pace, batting at a strike rate of 93.94. One could sense that he was on his way to something special – probably a century on debut – but his innings unceremoniously ended in a run out. Still, Sarfaraz had more than just done his job and capped off a memorable day with a phone call from brother Musheer. The younger of the two Khan brothers, recently coming off India’s runner-up campaign at the Under 19 World Cup, video-called Sarfaraz to congratulate on his 66-ball blitzkrieg. And here is how the conversation went.

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Sarfaraz: Musheer! Greetings Brother… How are you?

Musheer: I am fine, brother. Well played.

Sarfaraz: Thank you. Was I playing well?

Musheer: Number 1 brother. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

Sarfaraz: You will also represent India one day. Look at this (shows his India cap).

Musheer: I got a little worried…

Sarfaraz: When I played the sweep shots? The field was up.

Musheer: When you top-edged the ball playing a shot to Joe Root. I was watching and the moment I saw the ball had passed the fielder, I knew it was safe.

Sarfaraz: Alright! OK, brother. I will call you once I get to my hotel room.

Sarfaraz wasn’t expecting Musheer’s call

It truly was special for Sarfaraz, who by the end of the day was able to share his special day with his near and dear ones. His father was nearly inconsolable earlier in the day looking at Sarfaraz’s Test cap, and wife couldn’t control her tears either. Both had wonderful seats in the stands and enjoyed each and every stroke that flew from Sarfaraz’s bat. With every run, the cheers grew louder, flying kisses being directed at Sarfaraz, and to have gotten a call from his brother, who Sarfaraz claims to be an even better batter than him, was simply icing on the cake for the India debutant.

“Musheer… whenever I struggle even a little bit with my batting, I watch his batting because our styles are similar. It felt great speaking to my brother. Half my family is here and the other half is in Mumbai at home. It was a pleasant surprise. It is a memorable and important day of my life. I thank the almighty for this,” said Sarfaraz.

That Sarfaraz scored the first 43 of his 50-run partnership with Jadeja speaks volumes of his positive intent. Had it not been for his knock, India might have struggled to reach 326/5 and harbour hopes of reaching 400 on Day 2.


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