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Who is Akash Deep?

By CHITRANGADA DATTA CHAUDHURI
February 12, 2024 09:30 IST
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IMAGE: Bengal pacer Akash Deep was called-up for the India-England Test series. Photograph: Kind courtesy Akash Deep/Instagram
 

The Indian team is missing key players for the three remaining matches of the five Test England series, but that has made way for fresh faces to find their footing in the side.

Like Bengal pacer Akash Deep.

Akash was standing near the boundary ropes having finished his spell during Bengal's Ranji Trophy match against Kerala in Thumba. Applause from his Bengal team-mates gave him the news he had been waiting for -- his maiden Test call-up.

Donning the Test whites is every players dream and the 27 year old's journey so far hasn't been smooth. Despite the lack of support -- as the pacer told PTI, 'Playing cricket was a crime in Sasaram' -- Akash stayed true to his passion and his desire to play the game took him to Bengal from Bihar.

Akash made his first class debut for Bengal in 2019. From 29 first-class matches, Akash has picked up 103 wickets. This includes two Ranji Trophy finals. The Bengal cricketer has 42 List-A wickets from 28 matches.

Akash recently represented India A in the three unofficial Tests against England and was the leading wicket-taker with 13 wickets from three matches, which included two four wicket hauls.

Akash was also part of India's Asian Games squad and recently earned his ODI call up during India's ODIs in South Africa.

While he has marked his stamp in the domestic circuit, he also made inroads into the Indian Premier League, having made his IPL debut with the Royal Challengers Bangalore. He was signed by RCB in 2022 for his base price of Rs 20 lakh.

Bowling Stats

First Class: 103 wickets in 29 matches.

Best Bowling Figures: 6/60 vs Gujarat in 2020.

Four wicket hauls: 7.

Five wicket hauls: 4.

Ten wicket hauls: 1.

List A: 42 wickets in 28 matches.

T20s: 48 wickets in 41 matches.

Akash has also scored 418 runs from 29 matches, with a best knock of 53 not out.

Debut

First Class Debut: Akash made his first-class debut for Bengal at the Eden Gardens during the Ranji Trophy match against Andhra Pradesh. From his 15 overs, Akash picked up a three wicket haul.

List A Match Debut: During Bengal's Elite Group C Vijay Hazare match against Gujarat on September 24, 2019. On his debut Akash picked up two wickets in ten overs.

T20 Debut: Akash made his T20 debut during Bengal's Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy match against Maharashtra. Akash picked up two wickets from his four overs.

The Bengal pacer, who has overcome personal tragedies -- he lost his father and elder brother within six months -- is set to realise his dreams. But the question remains, will he make it to the playing XI?

With Jasprit Bumrah leading the pace attack and Mohammed Siraj bowling alongside him in place of another Bengal pacer Mukesh Kumar, it is unlikely Akash Deep will find a spot in the playing XI in the third Test.

With the series level 1-1, the third match of the series gets underway in Rajkot from February 15.

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CHITRANGADA DATTA CHAUDHURI

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