As the victorious team India has returned back, Mohammed Siraj didn’t go to his house. The pacer drove straight from the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Shamshabad, Hyderabad to the graveyard in Khairtabad in order to pay his final respects to his departed father, Mohammed Ghaus.
On November 20, only a week after Siraj had landed in Australia for a 2-month tour, his 53-year-old father, who was an auto-driver, sadly passed away owing to a lung ailment. The speedster was at a practice session at Sydney’s Blacktown Oval when his father died. It was the head coach Ravi Shastri and skipper Virat Kohli who broke the unfortunate news to the 26-year-old after the practice session.
“I lost the biggest supporter of my life. He was the person who supported me the most in my pursuit of a cricket career. It is a great loss for me. Even though he’s not in the world, he’ll always be with me,” Mohammed Siraj had stated earlier.
Finally, after more than two months, Siraj came back to India and from the airport drove directly to the graveyard, where his father was buried. Siraj had the company of his close friend, Mohammed Shafi as both paid tribute to Siraj’s late father.
“Siraj arrived around 9 in the morning and from there he went straight to the graveyard. His father would have been very proud to see Siraj do so exceedingly well in Test cricket, especially against the Australians on their home ground. Siraj would have been happier if he had been able to hug his father and share his success stories but destiny seems to have other plans,” said Mohammed Shafi, Siraj’s close friend.
Mohammed Siraj picks 5-for at the Gabba; India register a memorable series win
After hearing the news of his father’s demise, Siraj, with a heavy and brave heart, decided to stay back in Australia with the team to fulfil his father’s dream – he was given his debut cap in the second Test of the series after Mohammed Shami got injured. By the time the fourth Test commenced, he was the senior-most Test pacer in the team.
Siraj ends up as the leading wicket-taker for India picking 13 wickets, including his maiden five-wicket haul, in the 3 matches he played.
The Ajinkya Rahane-led group registered a comeback series victory – losing the first Test in Adelaide, winning the next in Melbourne, drawing in Sydney, and then defeating Australia at their fortress, the Gabba in Brisbane. India has conquered Australia for the second time in as many recent tours.
Mohammed Siraj will soon be seen in action in the upcoming home Test series against Joe Root’s England.