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‘I was hopeful’ – Akash Deep reflects on India selection for England Tests

The Indian team is well in the middle of a five-game Test series against England. having tussled against the Ben Stokes-led side in two Test matches so far, the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) recently announced India’s squad for the remaining three Tests against England.

One of the names in the Indian squad was pacer Akash Deep, drafted in to replace Avesh Khan. The 27-year-old was hopeful that his time would come to represent India. However, he did not expect it to be this soon.

“I was hopeful that in the near future I might get a Test call-up if I keep performing, but I didn’t expect that it would come by the third match itself,” Akash was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz.

Having picked up 103 wickets in 29 matches for Bengal on the domestic circuit, Akash Deep has impressed with his recent performances, and his call-up to the Indian team comes as a reward for the same.

Inswing is my stock delivery: Akash Deep

It is worth noting that Akash Deep was in India’s ODI squad for the recent South Africa tour. However, he did not get to make his debut and is hopeful that the same will not be the case against England. 

“Inswing is my stock delivery, but at this level, you need to have outswing and reverse swing, and more importantly, you need to control the swing. I was in the ODI squad in South Africa and realized that more than skill, at this level, it is more about the mental strength of being able to execute plans under pressure,” he said.

He also reflected on his journey so far; as a child, life was not as simple for the now-27-year-old. He came forward to talk about the early struggles that he had to go through to make it this far.

“In Bihar [suspended by the BCCI at the time], there was no platform, and especially from the place where I came from, Sasaram, playing cricket was a crime. Lots of parents would ask their children not to mingle with Akash, as he only plays cricket, and your studies would go for a toss. But I don’t blame them. What would you have achieved playing cricket in a place like that? You would be wasting time and not even become a cricketer, and also ignore academics. Your future would be ruined and they were worried. So, were my parents,” he added.

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