Since the BCCI announced the India squad for the tour of England, on Friday, for the World Test Championship final and the subsequent Test series against England, there has been one question on everyone’s mind: Who is Arzan Nagwaswalla?
The 23-year-old left-arm seamer from Gujarat is selected as one of the 4 stand-by players for the tour – the other three being Abhimanyu Easwaran, Prasidh Krishna, and Avesh Khan – and will travel with the Indian contingent to the UK.
Since Arzan Nagwaswalla wasn’t picked in the IPL auction, there is very little known to fans about him. Hailing from a small village named Nargol, in Gujarat, the medium-pacer has represented his state at the Under-16s, Under-19s, and Under-23 level.
He made his Ranji Trophy debut in 2018 and rose in the limelight with a five-wicket haul against Mumbai at the Wankhede. He garnered further attention in the 2019/20 season where the left-handed bowler ended up as Gujarat’s leading wicket-taker in the 2019/20 season with 41 scalps at a brilliant bowling average of 18.36.
He bagged three five-fors in the season, including a 10-wicket haul against Punjab, of which a video has been viral in the last few hours, as fans witness his skill level.
In a Group A game against Punjab in the 2019/20 season – the 2020/21 season didn’t happen due to the Covid-19 pandemic – the seamer picked two five-wicket hauls in a game, bagging the Man of the Match award.
In the first innings, Arzan Nagwaswalla took his first three wickets – Sanvir Singh, Abhishek Sharma, and Anmolpreet Singh – with similar deliveries: in swingers, coming into right-handers, Sanvir and Anmolpreet, dismissing them lbw; while Abhishek Sharma, the left-hander, nicked the ball to the wicketkeeper, Parthiv Patel.
Showing his repertoire, the bowler continued his spell to get rid of the senior batsman Gurkeerat Singh Mann: this time Nagwaswalla angled the ball across the right-hander, seaming it away, which took the outside edge of Gurkeerat’s poke and went into the hands of second slip.
He returned to clean up the tail bouncing out Siddarth Kaul and completed his five-for which largely helped him getting recognition. With the no Ranji season, he made noises in the Vijay Hazare Trophy bagging 19 wickets and played a vital role in pushing Gujarat to the semifinals.