Ashish Nehra, the bowler who came back stronger after each injury

 . Last updated on September 18, 2018, 1:05 PM
Ashish Nehra, the bowler who came back stronger after each injury

Ravi Shastri once commented that Nehra is “one of the best bowlers” Indian cricket team had.

Once Ravi Shastri, the current coach of Team India said Ashish Nehra “is one of the best bowlers that the Indian cricket team has ever seen”. This statement says a lot about ‘Nehra Ji’, as called by his fans and team-mates. The left arm fast bowler had a long career alongside the India cricket team since his debut Test in 1999 to the last T20I match in 2017. However, in this span of almost two decades, he had long stints of breaks due to injuries. His frequent rendezvous with injury issues took such a troll on him that Yuvraj Singh, known for his friendly puns, once joked, “Nehra is such a player who can get injured even while sleeping.”

Yet, Nehra played with optimal fitness until retirement only in late 2017. Nehra is well known for his carefree attitude and jolly nature. In an interview he disclosed that he had more than 12 surgeries in his body. Although absent from the team for long stretches, the player contributed immensely in World Cup campaigns, Asia Cup Tournaments as well as ICC Championship Trophies. In Class A cricket, the player represented Delhi. Nehra has played alongside four IPL teams so far, starting with Mumbai Indians in 2008. He played for Delhi Daredevils, Chennai Super Kings and lastly with Sunrisers Hyderabad.

Nehra is now in the coaching team of IPL team Royal Challengers Bangalore

Nehra is now in the coaching team of IPL team Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Lately, as confirmed on September 5, 2018, Nehra was appointed as one of the core coaching team of Royal Challengers Bangalore. He will guide the team along with Gary Kristen. Team Chairman Sanjeev Churiwala hoped for a friendly collaboration among Kristen, Nehra and captain Kohli. Nehra has in-dept insight on bowling as well as team strategy. When Karun Nair was left out off the last Test between India and England, he came up with huge skepticism. The former pacer lashed out at the selection process and criteria of team management. Even Sunil Gavaskar burst out saying, “Karun Nair has every right to ask the team management, what has he done wrong to not be picked in the side”. The former captain termed Nair’s exclusion as an ‘’utter nonsense”.

Ashish Diwan Singh Nehra was born in April of 1979. He was born in Delhi to Diwan Singh and Sumitra Nehra. His brother Bhanu Nehra runs a restaurant. Being a cricketer since his childhood, Nehra used to sit behind Virender Sehwag, with the later riding to Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in Delhi for playing cricket. He was trained under Tarik Sinha while playing with sonnet cc. He has been a part of the team since the early years. Nehra married Rushma Nehra. The couple dated for years, but the marriage was decided within 10 days. Nehra surprised his friends as well as Rushma proposing to marry after less than two weeks. The wedding was on April 2010. Now, the couple is parenting two children; daughter Ariana and son Aarush.

Ashish Nehra used to comeback after each injury with full vigor.

Ashish Nehra used to comeback after each injury with full vigor.

Nehra’s Test debut was in 1999 against Sri Lanka in Colombo. His ODI debut was after a year in 2001. On his debut Test, he took the wicket of Marvan Atapattu as his maiden knock. In ODI, he took the wicket of Alistair Campbell in the second ball of his debut. In 2003 World Cup, he wreaked the career best figures of six for 23 runs in the match against England. Although, his records were comparatively better, he could not be regular due to injury issues. However, he used to comeback after each critical injury and surgery with full vigor and playing with strong form. Such was his frequency on comebacks that he was named as the “Comeback Man” of the team. His frequent bone injuries also made him known as the “Mr. Glass” of the team.

In most of the tournaments Nehra played, he bowled with impressive form. Although, not consistent with his health, the bowler performed excellently until his retirement game. In the final T20 series in 2017 against England, he nicked three wickets for 28 runs in the second match. His performance in domestic circuit is also impressive. In 2013-14 Ranji Season, he took 6 wickets for 16 balls in a match against Vidarbha.

Nehra’s IPL performance is as good as his international form

Nehra’s IPL performance is as good as his international form.

In IPL, his bowling skills were on full swing. He started playing in the tournament alongside Mumbai Indians in 2008. In the next season, he was with Rajasthan Royals. In the following season, IPL 2010, he again joined Delhi Daredevils. In 2011, he was on board with the Pune Warriors for a whopping 3.91 Crore. In 2016, he played for Sunrisers Hyderabad for 5.5 Cr. He had a good contribution to the team’s title win.

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