‘It was the biggest shock for me, I felt like my clothes are ripped apart’
India cricketer Unmukt Chand won the Under-19 World Cup title as a captain in 2012 in Australia. And it’s in a style. He scored century in the final of the World Cup against the host Australia and won the title for his team.
But after so many years, there is no record of playing an international match in India’s jersey next to the name of Unmukt Chand. Even he has lost his place in India ‘A’ team. He has not played any match in IPL since 2016. After it remained unsold in the 2018 IPL, Chand felt naked. It seemed that someone had torn his clothes.
He has seen more decline than career rise. Probably the biggest disappointment in Indian cricket in the last few years is Chand. Until 2016, he played in India ‘A’ team, Delhi State team and Delhi-Rajasthan-Mumbai in IPL. But after 2016, the career of the opener seemed to collapse like a house of cards. He was dropped from the Delhi ODI team, then from the India ‘A’ team, then remained unsold in the IPL.
What happened was revealed openly in an interview with former India batsman and current commentator Aakash Chopra.
“The biggest shock for me came when I was dropped from the one-day team of Delhi. I was captaining India A then (2016), scoring runs, playing zonal T20 Cricket in Mumbai and they dropped me from one-day squad only,”
The whole story after this is like breaking a promise and frustration. He first explained the reason for his omission from the Delhi team, saying, “I was playing with Shikhar Dhawan and Gautam Gambhir, the selectors told me that we are making you preparing you for something else and they have dropped you from the Delhi squad.”
From there the story of his downfall began, “I was left out. Then after losing the first three matches, I got another chance. I played in the fifth and sixth matches, I became the man of the match in both matches by scoring 75 and 80 runs. But since I didn’t play too many matches, I didn’t get too many runs either. The selectors also dropped me from India ‘A’ team. In 2016, for the first time in my career, I was dropped from the India ‘A’ team. At the same time I was dropped from the IPL.”
Being unsold in the IPL is also a history of breaking promises to the opener. Although he was with Mumbai Indians at that time, he was not getting a chance to play much. That’s why he thought of changing the team. What happened next?
“It’s a funny story again. I was in Mumbai Indians and they had retained me It was such a big team that I was not getting any chance to play. I wanted to go to a side where at least I get matches to play. I talked to someone and he told me to leave MI and come to them. I just wanted to play and it was not about money. I wanted to play even if I was being picked at my base price,” said 27-year old Unmukt.
“Then during the action no one picked me. It suddenly stood in my face that there was suddenly no IPL, Delhi cricket. It was the biggest shock for me. I felt like my clothes are ripped apart. Suddenly from everywhere to nowhere. I woke up after 3-4 days and went to practice,” he added.