Tears of joy as Sarfaraz, Jurel make Test debuts | Video

Sarfaraz Khan
Sarfaraz Khan hugs his father Naushad Khan after receiving his Test cap. Photo: PTI/Kunal Patil

Rajkot: It was an emotional occasion as domestic batting star Sarfaraz Khan and wicketkeeper Dhruv Jurel were handed their Test caps on debut, before the start of play for the third Test against England here on Thursday.

A consistent performer on the domestic circuit for Mumbai, Sarfaraz has been in contention for national selection for a long time but the 26-year-old has had to wait for his chance to break into the Indian Test side.

Having received his maiden India call-up earlier in the series, Sarfaraz was in line for debut ever since India lost the services of K L Rahul for this Test and also given that his Mumbai teammate Shreyas Iyer lost his spot and Virat Kohli is unavailable.

On the other hand, with a sparkly average nearing 47 with the bat, Uttar Pradesh's Jurel became the obvious pick for the wicketkeeper-batter's spot after K S Bharat failed to make the most of the opportunities with the bat.

The two youngsters got their names engraved on the rich roster of India's Test cricketers with Sarfaraz becoming the 311th player and Jurel the 312th.

The right-handed Sarfaraz was presented his cap by former India captain and most successful Test bowler Anil Kumble.

"Sarfu, really proud of you, the way you have come through. I am sure your dad and your family will be extremely proud of what you have been able to achieve. I know you have done all the hard work," Kumble, also the former national coach, said in the team huddle.

"There were some disappointments but despite that, all the runs you have scored through the domestic season well done to you. I am sure you will have lots of wonderful memories today. (This is the) start of a long career, only 310 people have played before you, and this is for you. Good luck," he added.

Sarfaraz was later seen showing his India cap to his father and coach Naushad Khan who was overwhelmed with emotions and broke down.

Sarfaraz was also seen wiping off his wife's happy tears at the venue.

Former India wicketkeeper-batter Dinesh Karthik shared interesting anecdotes and statistics while making his speech during the cap presentation to Jurel.

Dhruv Jurel
Dhruv Jurel hugs teammates after receiving his first Test cap. Photo: Reuters/Francis Mascarenhas

"Coming from Agra, moving to Noida at a very young age, your mother being with you all the tough things that must have happened in the journey, there must have been so many people through that journey who would have really helped you. I am sure all of them would be watching today," he said.

"You must have played a lot of matches in different colours, mainly blue, but there is something divine and pure about wearing the whites and representing India in Test cricket. It is the toughest format of the game, it is relentless but there is tremendous satisfaction that comes when you do well in this format," Karthik said.

Karthik said doing well in Test cricket is paramount for every cricketer and wished Jurel to have success like his teammate Rinku Singh.

"Your dad is watching today who is your biggest hero and he will be really proud and happy like everybody else are," he said.

"Everybody's journey is different and what you have done in this short duration of time and achieved let us take an example, Rinku Singh, who has been your roommate for sometime now and (also) your housemate," Karthik revealed.

"He has done some special things in the last six months and may you do special things as well," the former India stumper said.

Karthik pulled up some numbers to highlight how rare it is to get to play Test cricket for India.

"Not many have played this format I tell you that in the last 10 years as a commentator I took up some stats: 65 people have played T20Is, 56 have played ODIs but just 30 have managed to play Test cricket," he said.

"This is the toughest form and very hard to get in. What you have achieved is really special and may you stay here long and do really well," Karthik added. 

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