Former Hong Kong captain Anshuman Rath, who had scored 73 in 97 deliveries against India in Asia Cup 2018, may soon play local cricket in Nagpur and represent Vidarbha in the Indian domestic cricket.
Rath, who originally hails from Odisha, has been in talks with Vidarbha Cricket Association (VCA) vice-president Prashant Vaidya. However, he has not received any guarantee as such and has been informed that he would have to prove his mettle like any other cricketer to get a spot in the Vidarbha squad.
“The VCA has spoken to Saba Karim (BCCI’s general manager) about my road map, and all indications that they are the team I’m most likely to turn up for, provided I put in the hard yards in club cricket and show them performance,” Rath was quoted as saying to a leading national daily.
Rath is aware of the depth of cricketing talent in India and the competition he would be facing on his quest for a place in the Vidarhbha side. He also expressed his excitement to be a part of the local club cricket and termed the facilities there as “top-notch”. Reportedly, he also desires to ply his trade in the Indian Premier League.
“Their (VCA) message is: ‘The door is open’, but I have to do whatever I can to put myself up for selection. At the end of the day, if you’re scoring runs, you will be picked. Hopefully, I can do that. They’ve kept me in the loop with everything, and about the club system here. The facilities are top-notch and I’m looking forward to it,” Rath said.
VCA, too, reciprocated the lines of Rath and said that if he performs well in club and league games he would be picked. However, they clarified that it won’t be easy for the 21-year-old as many local Under-23 and Under-19 players are already knocking the doors of the senior team.
Also, the left-handed batsman was not selected in the Hong Kong squad for the ICC World T20 2020 Qualifiers. Cricket Hong Kong in their official press release on Wednesday stated the reason for not picking him as “so he can pursue other opportunities abroad”.