India selection sweet redemption for Shivam Dube
- Dube is yet another student of India’s best coach in domestic cricket, ex-India stumper Chandrakant Pandit, who is coaching Vidarbha these days
- Last season, Dube had narrowly missed out on the unique feat of hitting six sixes in a Ranji game against Baroda’s left-arm spinner Swapnil Singh
- It earned him a Rs 5 crore IPL contract with RCB
MUMBAI: Shivam Dube, the latest Mumbai cricketer to make it to the Indian team, almost quit cricket.
At 14, the Andheri resident had to keep the bat and the ball back in locked in his kitbag for the four years due to financial distress. However, four years later, he was able to pursue the sport professionally after being helped by cousin Rajiv Dube, and uncle Ramesh Dube. “Our father had a dairy business at first, before he launched his own business of ‘washing’ jeans. We had a factory in Bhiwandi. However, due to my cricket, my father had to quit that business, and rent out the property. Due to financial reasons, I had to quit playing cricket for around four years from age 14 to 18.
“However, I started playing the game again, when I was 18, after my cousin, and uncle (he’s a corporator from Andheri East, and a former MLA from a constituency in UP) supported me in every way,” an emotional Dube recalled while speaking to TOI on a day when he received his maiden India call-up, for the Bangladesh T20Is.
Dube is yet another student of India’s best coach in domestic cricket, ex-India stumper Chandrakant Pandit, who is coaching Vidarbha these days. “My father introduced me to the game when I was just six. Then I went to Pandit sir’s (CPCC) academy (in Andheri). After taking a break from the game for a few years, I resumed training under Satish Samant (ex-Mumbai Under-19 coach),” he recalled.
"We’re very happy about his India selection. He was with us for more than five years. When he came to us, he was very chubby. At the age of nine, he used to hit the ball hard. I and Nilesh (Bhosale, coach at CPCC) decided not to change his natural game,” Pandit told TOI.
"He used to be our main bowler in school (Hansraj Morarji PS), so he was always looked upon as an all-rounder. He was a sincere boy,” said Pandit, before fondly recalling, "He used to love eating a lot. He used to drink plenty of milk, and eat a lot of non-veg food which his father would bring for him.”
Last season, Dube had narrowly missed out on the unique feat of hitting six sixes in a Ranji game against Baroda’s left-arm spinner Swapnil Singh at the Wankhede. It earned him a Rs 5 crore IPL contract with RCB. His ability to hit the ball cleanly has evoked comparisons with India’s 2011 World Cup hero Yuvraj Singh. He also idolises South African great Jacques Kallis.
Dube said if and when he gets his India cap, he would dedicate it to his father. "It was his dream that I play for India," he said.