The 21-year-old Yashasvi, who was named as a stand-by player for the World Test Championship Final, was on Friday selected in India’s Test squad for the two-match Test series against the West Indies in the Caribbean. The opening Test will start from July 12 at Windsor Park in Dominica.
“My father was so emotional and started crying. He hugged me. I had an inkling that I would be picked, but I was a bit nervous and was waiting for the news. When the news came through, I was extremely happy. I have come a long way and want to thank each and every one who has supported me in my journey,” an elated Yashasvi further told TimesofIndia.com.
From a promising batsman to becoming a household name thanks to incredible hard work and perseverance and the constant willingness to get better – that’s how Yashasvi’s fairytale journey can be summed up.
The 21-year-old’s journey so far has been a fascinating one. He was 11 when he left his home in Suriya village in Uttar Pradesh and travelled to Mumbai and lived in tents in the initial days of his career.
He had to sell pani puris to earn money and lived in tents at Azad Maidan. His quintessential rags-to-riches story has been an inspiration for many.
In IPL 2023, the left-hander was the fifth-highest run-getter and finished with 625 runs in 14 matches at an average of 48.08, with one century, and five fifties.
This was a watershed season for the 21 year old and his most prolific year in the league.
On the back of his stupendous show in IPL 2023, Yashasvi was selected as a stand-by player for the WTC Final which India lost to Australia by 209 runs.
Sharing the nets and dressing room with seniors like Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara helped Yashasvi take his game to the next level. The one thing that is no secret about him is that he is always willing to learn and get better and is always seeking advice from his seniors.
“WTC Final was a huge learning curve for me. Sharing the dressing room with legends like Rohit, Virat, Rahane, Pujara, Shami, and others was a big, big thing for me. I am really feeling confident. I am grateful. This is just the beginning. I have to keep learning, keep growing, and have to travel a long long way to go. I just want to thank God, my coach, my seniors, and everyone who supported me in this journey. I want to thank the selectors who have trusted my abilities and given me this opportunity,” Yashasvi further told TimesofIndia.com.
“Rohit bhai is from Mumbai and I have played cricket under him and learned a lot from him. He is such an experienced cricketer and has played numerous match winning knocks. Ajinkya bhai is also there. I love his calmness and the way he takes the game forward. Virat bhai is a legend of the game. I had a really good interaction with him during the IPL. I took a lot of tips from him,” the 21-year-old, who has 9 First Class centuries and an average of over 80, said.
“During the net sessions, I spoke to every senior player and tried to learn something new. I did the same during the IPL as well and will keep learning,” he said.
“READY TO BAT IN ANY POSITION AND SITUATION”
Wearing Test whites is every cricketer’s dream and Yashasvi has been chasing this dream for a long time.
Will the West Indies tour see Yashasvi’s long-cherished dream coming true?
“I am ready for everything that comes my way. I am ready for every challenge. If given a chance, I will give my 100 percent. I am ready to bat in any position, in any conditions, and any situation. I just want to go out to the middle and express myself,” Yashasvi told TimesofIndia.com.
“I got a message from Rahul Dravid sir also. He also wished me luck after my selection,” Yashasvi signed off.