Divyansh Joshi became the first player from Mizoram to be selected for team India’s under 19 side for the upcoming U-19 world cup to be held in South Africa. Joshi though is not a native of Mizoram, he has been representing the state in the domestic competitions.
Joshi is now the first cricketer from any of the five new northeast states to represent India in a World Cup.
The 18-year-old’s road to Mizoram and the subsequent India call-up has been a long and winding one: he represented Uttar Pradesh at the U-14 and U-16 levels and learnt his art at Sonnet Club in Delhi under Dronacharya award winning coach Tarak Sinha. As it turned out, UP’s cricket setup gave him the snub when the Greater Noida resident graduated to the U-19 level, reported The Times of India.
“I was not considered for U-19 camps in UP. I had been a consistent performer in U-14 and U-16 cricket. I was always part of the zonal cricket academies and the NCA camps. I didn’t play any state-level cricket last year. So I decided to move out of UP,” Joshi, son of a software engineer, was quoted as saying by the TOI.
Joshi logged on to the Indian cricket board’s website and registered for other teams as a ‘professional’ cricketer.
“I couldn’t have lost another year. My family and I were unsure if UP would give me a chance this year. So I went for trials in Kolkata earlier this year and the people in Mizoram decided to sign me up,” Joshi told the newspaper.
He played six matches for Mizoram in the Vinoo Mankad matches and seemed to strike the right chord with selectors, who were desperate to find a pace-bowling all-rounder. – eom