Ashraf bhai is a well-known face at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai. He has been a regular in repairing bats for Sachin Tendulkar and Virat Kohli whenever they play in the city and also lend his helping hand to some of the West Indies cricketers. However, Ashraf bhai is not in good health, with his financial situation looming large.
The Indian Express reports that he has been admitted to a hospital in Mumbai suburbs with health problems. He has some issues regarding kidney and some other ailments. The situation is worse as it comes in a situation when his business is running low. With the IPL 2020 shifted to UAE, there are not many cricketers asking him to fix the bat.
However, in this crisis situation, Ashraf bhai has a well-wisher in Prashant Jethmalani, who has helped him in the initial funding for his kidney treatment. But said that more funds will be required to treat him.
“His situation is not good. There was some kidney stone-related problem, which has resurfaced again and there are other complications too. The lockdown means his business took a major hit as cricket has completely come to standstill in the city. He doesn’t have funds; whatever he has, it’s over,” Jethmalani told the Indian Express.
“We managed around two lakhs but we need more. We also want to raise some funds for him for his sustainance in the near future,” he adds.
Ashraf bhai has been running M Ashraf Bros, a family business, since the 1920s. Back in 2016, Ashraf has donated a pack of 16 bats to the West Indies players at a time when the visitors had a tussle with their board.
“Nobody is asking for bats these days and with IPL happening abroad, there will be no work for Ashraf. Sad part is that many players owe him money but they haven’t paid him yet. Ashraf till date has never asked money from them,” Jethmalani said.
Jethmalani, his well-wisher, believes its time some cricketers come up and help him.