Aaqib Naik

Shopian boy who left his job to play cricket gets selected for Ranji trails

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Shopian, July 08:  A famous left-hand pacer, Zubair Ahmad Pandith, from Chitragam village of district Shopian has won hearts of cricketers here for being picked out in the district-wise selection process of Ranji trials.

Zubair left the job of Jammu and Kashmir police three years after joining it because he was more passionate about cricket and wanted to devote much of his time in furthering his cricketing career.

Talking to ‘Kashmir Images’ about his success Zubair said, “It is a dream come true for me that I have been selected for the Ranji trials. I have worked very hard for reaching this stage of my cricketing career.

The left-hand pacer, Zubair, has become talk of town who impressed the JKCA officials and selectors at Sher-I-Kashmir stadium Srinagar, he is the only pacer from his district who has reached this feat.

Presently, Zubair is playing for FCC friend’s cricket club, Srinagar which is affiliated with Jammu Kashmir Cricket association JKCA.

“On the very first day of trials at Sher-I-Kashmir stadium, my performance was hailed by the selectors including the international cricketer Irfan Pathan,” says Zubair.

Recalling his cricket career Zubair says, “I am passionate about cricket since my childhood, I started playing cricket at the young age of 15.”

Zubair says that his family has always supported him especially his mother who always praise me for my best performances. “My father was not interested in my playing cricket, he always used to say that there is no scope for cricket in Kashmir, but today my father is very proud of me.”

Few years back Zubair was picked for under-19 trials at the district level but was rejected in the final round.  “I used to practice five hours every day in my orchid as there is no playground in our village,” says Zubair.

“At the age of 18, I got a job in J&K Police where after 2 years training and one year service I quit the job as I was not getting enough time for playing cricket which made me to leave the job. At that time my father was very disappointed with me but rest of my family never lost hope and kept supporting me,” adds Zubair.

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