After a phenomenal knock against Pakistan in Under - 19 World Cup Semifinal, 18-year-old Yashasvi Jaiswal will surely be under the radar of first-class cricket selectors. His unbeaten century in India's 10 wicket win on February 4 made him the highest run-scorer with 312 runs in the tournament. Jaiswal was unbeaten on 105 off 113 balls in an innings laced with eight fours and four sixes.
His sensational knock has garnered praise from all around the world.
"Remember my words that Jaiswal is going to go places. He has the power, passion and interest for the game. He will represent the senior team, this is a guarantee," Shoaib said on his Youtube channel, adding that Pakistani players should learn from Jaiswal's history.
As congratulatory messages poured in, very few know the struggle that has been put behind to get into the Under 19 Indian squad.
Jaiswal came to Mumbai with his father and started practising cricket at Azad Maidan. However, after a few days, his father asked him to return to his native state of Uttar Pradesh.
Determined to play for team India, Jaiswal stayed back in Mumbai. With no space to live, Jaiswal with all his stuff came to Azad Maidan. At that time, one of his mentor - Pappu Sir made an offer to him. "At that time, a match was happening, and Pappu Sir told me that if I performed in that match, there would be a tent for me to stay in," Jaiswal told ICC.
He was exceptional in the match and won a tent to his name. However, getting a shed to cover his head was not enough. He had to use public toilets to take a shower.
As he did not get any monetary support from his family, he had to sell pani puris in the evening (Indian snack) to earn his living in this expensive city. On a few occasions, selling pani puris became embarrassing for him when other players used to come to his counter to have the snacks. "I used to feel so bad because I would score a century in the morning and in the evening I used to sell panipuris. But it didn't matter if it was a small job, as it was important for me. Yet my only focus was on cricket," he added.
Within a few days, his batting technique caught the attention of coach Jwala Singh. Impressed with his style, he decided to train Jaiswal. Jwala knew the condition in which Jaiswal was living. He asked him to focus on the game, and the rest will be taken care of.
Jaiswal with his batting technique, got selected and played for Mumbai in Vijay Hazare trophy. He made a record of becoming the youngest player to hit double tons in List A cricket.
He scored 203 runs off 154 balls against Jharkhand. After that, his selection for the U-19 squad was a piece of cake. As the U-19 world cup is in its last stage, Jaiswal fans pray that they got to see phenomenal knock one more time, before the IPL's onset. Jaiswal will be playing for Rajasthan Royals from this year.