Indian descent Jatinder Singh, who opens the batting order for the Oman national team, said he was fond of watching Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag bat together.
Jatinder, whose family hails from Ludhiana in Punjab, scored an unbeaten 73-run knock against Papua New Guinea in the opening game of ICC T20 World Cup qualifiers on Sunday in Al Amerat, Oman.
Oman are the co-hosts with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for the ICC T20 World Cup 2021. All six matches of Group B are held in the Pearl of Arabia.
The 32-year-old Jatinder, on talking about his passion for cricket, said he liked watching the batting of Sehwag and Tendulkar.
“During my time in India, too, I was passionate about cricket and would play gully cricket with my cousins. I always liked watching Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag bat,” Jatinder told Indian Express.
“It was only here in Muscat that I started playing cricket for my school team and later for corporate teams as a junior as well senior cricketer,” he added.
Oman national team cricketers are not highly paid like India: Jatinder Singh
Jatinder said that the national players in Oman are not paid much, and they have to play corporate cricket for financial benefits.
“Cricket in Oman sees teams competing at corporate level, and national team cricketers are not highly paid like India, he said.
“I joined Arabian industries in 2011 before joining Khimji Ram Das Company in 2014, and now I work in the administration department. After the practice sessions in the morning, I have to be on my job from 8.30 am to 5pm,” he added.
I tell my family that now they have two countries to support: Jatinder Singh
The Ludhiana-born cricketer made his T20I debut for Oman in 2015 against Afghanistan and has made 770 runs from 29 matches so far.
Jatinder shared his experience of meeting Indian players while playing for Oman and also said that his family has to support two countries in cricket.
“Whenever I play wearing the Oman jersey, I tell my family that now they have two countries to support in cricket. In the 2014 Asia Cup, I got to meet the Indian team members, and it was a memorable moment for me,” the 32-year-old asserted.
“To score my first ODI century last month was also special, and it made me believe that I can score big at the international level. I also met Mumbai Ranji team players, including Rajasthan Royals player Yashasvi Jaiswal and Mumbai coach Amol Majumdar earlier this year, and we discussed a lot about cricket,” he concluded.
Oman will play against Bangladesh in their second match of Group B on Tuesday at the Al Amerat Cricket Ground.