WATCH: Rahul Dravid delivers emotional speech before handing debut Test cap to Akash Deep

Akash Deep dismissed England's top-order batters namely Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett and Ollie Pope.

Rahul Dravid and Akash Deep
Rahul Dravid and Akash Deep. (Image Source: BCCI)

Akash Deep breathed a sigh of relief after his dream became reality today as he made his Test debut for India. Every cricketer goes through hardship before representing the country but in Akash Deep’s case, it was something else.

It was an emotional journey where he had seen it all. He went through challenges and emotional turmoil in his journey. Today, he has come a long way to make his debut for Team India. The Bihar-born cricketer received a Test debut cap from India’s head coach Rahul Dravid.

Before handing over the cap, he delivered an emotional speech, an incident that had never happened before in the history of Indian cricket. Rahul Dravid’s speech helped Akash Deep bring the best out of himself on his Test debut where he rattled England’s top-order batters. The likes of Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett and Ollie Pope had no answers to Akash Deep’s wicket-taking deliveries.

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Rahul Dravid delivers an inspiring speech before handing Test cap

In a recent video posted by BCCI.tv, India’s head coach Rahul Dravid told Akash Deep, “Akash your journey started from a place named Baddi, which is roughly 200 km from here. You have faced a lot of hardships in this journey, you have worked hard and you have seen a lot of ups and downs.”

Dravid further said, “You on your own, moved from Baddi to Delhi to play cricket. You were inspired by the 2007 T20 World Cup win. You stayed alone in Delhi and put in the effort. Then you moved to Kolkata from Delhi. You played domestic cricket and put up impressive performances. Your journey has taken you to Ranchi, which is 200km closer to your village and you are going to get your India cap here today.”

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“It is a special feeling for you as your mother is also here along with some of your family members. It is unfortunate that your father and elder brother are no more. But we are sure that they are blessing you from wherever they are. Our entire team is wishing you. Please enjoy this moment and this match. You have worked hard to reach here this has been your dream. We are happy that we are here with you to fulfil this dream. Enjoy these five days and your entire career. With great joy, I present to you India Test Cap No., 313,” the head coach said.

Akash Deep finds light at the end of the tunnel despite personal tragedies and challenges

Hailing from Sasaram in Bihar, playing cricket was considered a crime as his neighbours would warn their kids to not mingle with Akash Deep since he plays only cricket and is not focused on his studies.

However, Akash Deep always had a soft spot for cricket and wanted to follow his dream but was discouraged by his father, rather encouraged him to choose a different career that would offer him stability in life.

His father wanted him to find the gateway to government jobs but Akash already set his sights on becoming a cricketer. Despite opposition from his family, he didn’t give up his dream as he left for Durgapur with the excuse of finding a job.

His life took a turn when he got support from his uncle and from then, he went to a local academy where he started developing his skills. He gained recognition for his pace before he was struck by personal tragedies as he lost his father and older brother within six months, where he was a lone man lost at sea.

Akash went through the darkest phase of his career as financial difficulties mounted on his shoulders and had to take care of his mother. The unexpected circumstances forced him out of the game for three years.

Despite being driven into the corner, the 27-year-old found his way world. In his journey, he faced mental troubles, financial difficulties and challenges but all these didn’t stop him from becoming a cricketer. The Indian pacer who has seen the ups and downs of his journey will be looking forward to cementing his spot in the Indian cricket team with consistent performances.

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