‘Father Sold Milk to See Me Play’: U-19 WC Captain Priyam Garg
Priyam Garg’s story is one which breeds inspiration. As a son of a milkman, Garg had to rely on his dedication and skill to help himself and his family get out of the tight financial situation that they were in.
The man that will lead the Indian Cricket Team at the Under-19 World Cup in South Africa in January 2020 has worked hard to get to this position and has detailed his upbringing to The Indian Express.
Garg spoke about how his father had to do odd jobs to make ends meet, while trying to help him fulfil his dream of being a cricketer.
Not only did his father do this, he also used to accompany Garg to a cricket academy in Meerut, some 20 km away from their house in the village of Parikshitgarh. The academy that Garg went to has produced Indian cricketers like Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
Garg’s father is still a big influence in his life and spoke about how he had to change occupations to accommodate his son’s rising cricketing prowess.
“I had to stop our milk business since I had to take Priyam to the ground early morning. So I decided to drive a school van and got into newspaper distribution,” said Naresh Garg.
The greatest form of approval that Priyam’s father Naresh got was from former Indian cricketer Rahul Dravid.
“...one day, I met Rahul Dravid and he told me not to worry and that my son would go places. I was happy that day,” he said.
Priyam Garg’s concept of parental love comes from his father, as the cricketing prodigy had lost his mother at the age of 11.
“I was too small to understand what was happening but as I grew up, there was a big hole, which has never been filled. My father and sisters took care of me, my father sacrificed a lot for me,” he says.
Garg has grown up being a fan of Sachin Tendulkar and cites the Master Blaster as his greatest influence. However, watching Sachin in action was a big challenge for Garg.
Garg has represented his home state Uttar Pradesh at the U-14, U-16 and U-19 level. He recently represented UP in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, which was his first exposure to professional Twenty20 Cricket.
He represented India C in the Deodhar Trophy, where his team lost in the finals to India B. Garg scored 74 runs off 77 balls to help his team, alongside batsmen like Shubman Gill and Mayank Agarwal.
The 19-year-old Garg also played for India Green in the Duleep Trophy, where he lost in the finals to India Red.
Last year, he amassed 867 runs for UP in his maiden Ranji Trophy season, including one double hundred, two centuries and five fifties.
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