Last Update on: October 19th, 2019 at 10:42 am
The way the last few hours have panned out for Shahbaz Nadeem, even he must have been struggling to come to terms with it. The left-arm spinner had played against Mumbai in the Vijay Hazare Trophy a couple of days ago and was nowhere close to getting a call from the Indian team. However, he earned his maiden Test call-up on the eve of the ongoing third Test in Ranchi after Kuldeep Yadav complained of shoulder pain.
And just hours later, he was handed his maiden Test cap by India skipper Virat Kohli. Nadeem could not have asked for a better venue than his hometown to make his debut after toiling hard for more than a decade in domestic cricket. He had earned his maiden call-up from Indian team last year for the T20I series against West Indies but could not make his debut.
Nadeem, who made his first-class debut way back in 2004 for Jharkhand versus Kerala, has picked up 424 scalps at an average of just over 28 in first-class cricket so far. He was the highest wicket-taker in the Ranji Trophy during the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons, ending with 51 and 56 wickets respectively.
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He did well in the last season too, picking up 37 wickets in first-class cricket. Shahbaz Nadeem was also in fine form (15 wickets) during India A’s tour of West Indies this year. He is also a handy lower-order batsman, having scored seven fifties and one century in first-class games. Shahbaz Nadeem is well aware of the conditions in Ranchi and will be looking to make a mark straightaway.
Meanwhile, the cricketing fraternity was delighted after Shahbaz Nadeem finally made his Test debut. Here are some of the reactions:
Extremely happy for Shahbaz Nadeem, one of the most prolific wicket takers in domestic cricket #INDvSA
— Deep Dasgupta (@DeepDasgupta7) October 19, 2019
Congrats Shahbaz Nadeem on earning the India cap. Well deserved for the hard work you have put in
— Cricketwallah (@cricketwallah) October 19, 2019
Stoked for Shahbaz Nadeem! A Test debut out of nowhere almost, but no one deserves it more. pic.twitter.com/zj5XJX96JG
— Saurabh Somani (@saurabh_42) October 19, 2019
Shahbaz Nadeem, what a day for him and his family. This sport is really really kind. 🙌🏏
— KASHISH (@crickashish217) October 19, 2019
So happy for Shahbaz Nadeem…wonderful numbers in domestic cricket..an old-fashioned, hard-working cricketer. Whether he succeeds ir not, he is, deservedly, a Test cricketer..finally! #INDvSA
— Hemant (@hemantbuch) October 19, 2019
Congratulations shahbaz nadeem, I must say being a ardent follower of the game it makes me so happy 😊. I know he might not end up with so many test to his name but there is no such joy as being called a test player. Congratulations cap no. 296 🙌🙌#INDvSA
— Cricket baba (@Cricketbaba5) October 19, 2019
Richly deserving debut for Shahbaz Nadeem, who has now been rewarded for doing hard yards in domestic plus India A circuit. Called up last night and now making his Test debut at his home ground. Anything can happen in life within a matter of few hours!
— Niharika Raina (@niharika_raina) October 19, 2019
After 15 years of toiling hard in domestic cricket, with 424 first class wickets in 110 matches, finally Shahbaz Nadeem has earned his test cap & become 296th player to represent India in this format.
— Rohit Yadav (@cricrohit) October 19, 2019