Yashasvi Jaiswal Introduces the Man Who Transformed his Career
The Quint caught up with the Player of the Tournament of U-19 World Cup Yashasvi Jaiswal & his coach Jwala Singh.
Video Journalists: Abhishek Ranjan and Athar Rather
Video Editor: Deepthi Ramdas
When The Quint met Yashasvi Jaiswal, Player of the Tournament for the ICC U-19 World Cup 2020, it was evident from the first minute that the young cricketer’s universe was all about his coach and mentor Jwala Singh.
And as expected, when Yashasvi finished the tournament as the top scorer, his coach couldn’t be proud enough for his favourite student.
“Under-19 World Cup is a very big platform in the age-group tournament and that is the end of the junior cricket you can say. And he ended that on a very high note. Being Man of the Tournament is a very big achievement.”Jwala Singh, Yashasvi Jaiswal’s Coach
The Indian unit may have missed the mark in the final, but Yashasvi was right on the money, scoring 400 runs from 6 matches at mind-boggling average of 133.33. Barring one match against Japan, the southpaw scored fifty plus scores in all other matches in the competition.
The only hundred Yashasvi scored was in the crucial semi-final encounter against Pakistan. Apart from the fact that the hundred came against arch-rival Pakistan, another reason which makes the knock extra-special is that it was witnessed by Jwala, despite his student strictly asking him not to be there down in South Africa.
“My original plan was to be in South Africa, actually with my family. But before the semi-finals, I was speaking to him (Yashasvi) and he said I was kind of alone. So, I thought let’s go there and support him before the finals,” said coach Jwala.
“Just before leaving I had a video call with him so he shouldn’t realise that I am coming there. And then once I went there, there was the match between India and Pakistan, and he scored 105 not out. So, it was a great feeling for me that he scored a 100 in front of me.”Jwala Singh, Yashasvi Jaiswal’s Coach
Yashasvi might have wanted his coach to be away from South Africa since his presence could have made Yashasvi nervous, but the young cricketer couldn’t be happier that ‘the most important person in his life’ witnessed his first World Cup ton.
“After the match, somebody came to me and told me Jwala Sir was here. Initially, I didn’t believe him but eventually when I met, I was surprised. I was happy that he could witness my hundred.”Yashasvi Jaiswal
But Yashasvi’s life wasn’t without his fair share of struggles. After arriving in Mumbai from Uttar Pradesh at a young age of 10 years, Yashasvi had tough time in the city. It was only after Jwala Singh, took him under his wing, Yashasvi’s life took a turn for good.
“I have no words to say. You can understand my feeling. For me Jwala Sir is like my God.”Yashasvi Jaiswal
Their association began in December 2013, after Yashasvi enrolled in Jwala Singh’s cricket academy.
Apart from providing him cricket coaching, Jwala also invited him to stay at his place and became his legal guardian. So, it isn’t a surprise when Yashasvi equates his coach to his God and calls him ‘his everything’.
As a tribute to his coach, the batsman wears his coach’s birthday as his jersey number. In fact, he wore the number in the recently concluded World Cup.
“The day I met him that was my best day. And that’s why I really feel proud to wear that No. 23 jersey. And I feel good. And as I said before he is everything to me.”Jwala Singh, Yashasvi Jaiswal’s Coach
When Yashasvi got selected for the India U-19 squad, he had to give the jersey number and it was during that time he had called his coach to enquire about his birthday.
“I didn’t know that he was going to do something like this. I am very happy that he is following me and following my passion,” the coach said.
Not only the student, even the coach had planned something special for his diligent ward.
“When he used to go for the U-23 matches, as a batsmen he is needed to carry very very big kit bag which is very hard to travel with. The U-19 World Cup and his birthday were very close so I had promised him that I will gift him a car if he finishes the World Cup as the highest run-getter.”Jwala Singh, Yashasvi Jaiswal’s Coach
Yashasvi has kept his word and now it is time for the coach to deliver. But Jwala Singh has already done so much for the young cricketer and all this for the common love for cricket and how the coach believes that both had a similar back story.
There are certain things you don’t have any answer to. Whenever I sit with him, I ask him how there are certain special relationships blossom overnight. Actually he had the same backstory that I had. And I feel that it is one of the biggest reasons.
Jwala sir had provided a stranger kid with food and shelter.
“I had a similar dream. When I was 12 years of age I came from Gorakhpur to Mumbai. When he was telling me about his struggles – how nobody is supporting him, his father and mother stay far away. It felt as if I was talking to myself and I always had at the back of my mind that I will someday do something to support someone,” said Coach Jwala.
“I always tell him that I never felt that he is a different person. It is a weird combination; I believe has been created by God. And we are very happy, and we are enjoying the phase.”Jwala Singh, Yashasvi Jaiswal’s Coach
And once again, Yashasvi is at loss of word. The only things he manages to say ‘Jwala Sir is like a god to me.’
Apart from all the good things that is happening in Yashasvi’s life, another milestone for the 19-year-old cricketer was when he was picked up by Rajasthan Royals for the upcoming edition of the Indian Premier League for a whopping Rs 2.4 crore. And the coach cannot be more excited.
“I am very happy that he has been picked by Rajasthan Royals. If you see the background of Rajasthan Royals they have not only recruited new players but also provided them with opportunities, which is very important.”Jwala Singh, Yashasvi Jaiswal’s Coach
The coach is elated at the fact that Shane Warne will be there when Yashasvi will start attending the preparatory.
“During the camp, I will advise him that whatever doubts he has to get cleared from all the big players who will be in the camp. Even Shane Warne will be there and he bowls the leg-spin well. We will try our best to learn from these people. We are lucky that we will get these people around us. And I believe it is very important to learn things,” the coach added.
As Yashasvi looks at his coach with full devotion while he speaks, coach Jwala continues to reiterate what he told Yashasvi since the beginning.
“Apart from playing good cricket, one has to extend his or her career in sports. Yashasvi has a good temperament but it is important that he continues that habit all through his career.”Jwala Singh, Yashasvi Jaiswal’s Coach
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