Cricket is more than just a game for the fans. The reason behind it is not the sport itself but the passionate and dedicated individuals who rose to prominence despite all odds. These are the cricketers who lost their loved ones but still took the field and made history.
"Krunal and I used to get Maggi for Rs 5 and we used to request the gardener to give us hot water and we used to prepare and eat it at the ground for lunch and breakfast", Hardik Pandya once claimed in an interview with Indian Express.
Such has been the struggle of the Pandya brothers which has inspired millions. Krunal finally made his ODI debut against England in the ongoing series and smashed the fastest half-century by any cricketer on debut in ODIs. He left cricket fans around the world teary eyed after dedicating the knock to his father who passed away recently.
During the 1999 World Cup, the 'God of Cricket' unfortunately lost his father. Such was the dedication of the master that he returned to England after attending the funeral and smashed a terrific ton against Kenya. The whole nation was in 'awe' of the master who scored one of the most emotional tons of all time.
If there is one man who can be called as the living manifestation of passion and aggression, it is Virat Kohli. The current Indian captain lost his father when he was just 18 years old. He was playing a Ranji Trophy match against Karnataka when he got the news. Not out on 40, Kohli returned and scored 90 the very next day to save Delhi from a follow-on.
During IPL 2020, Kings XI Punjab batsman Mandeep Singh lost his father while he was in UAE. With all the Covid-19 guidelines, going home for the funeral would have ended the season for him. Instead, the gutsy right hander played the next two games against SRH and Kolkata Knight Riders. Mandeep ended up scoring a match-winning knock of 66 against KKR.
An auto driver's son who worked enormously hard to make his way into the Indian team, Siraj lost his father while he was with the Indian team in Australia. He was offered by BCCI to fly back home but Siraj stayed. "Stay strong for your dad's dream," was the captain's advice to him and the young lad from Hyderabad turned up and delivered one of the best bowling spells by an Indian quick bowler Down Under. He took 13 wickets in the three Tests that he featured in.