India will compete with Hong Kong in Asia Cup on August 31
Hong Kong’s team includes from businessman to food delivery boy
3 players recently became fathers but could not visit their children
New Delhi. There will be a competition between India and Hong Kong in the Asia Cup-2022 on August 31. Both the teams are riding on the chariot of victory. While Hong Kong’s team has come to the main draw after winning the qualifiers, India has also defeated Pakistan in the opening match. In such a situation, the competition is expected to be tough. Hong Kong will anyway play a match against India after 4 years. The last time both the teams met was in the Asia Cup in 2018. After this, this will be the second match between India and Hong Kong.
The Hong Kong team has been playing cricket continuously for the last 3 months. The players don’t even have enough time to meet their baby children. Three Hong Kong players Babar Hayat, Ehsan Khan and Yasim Mortaza have recently become fathers. But, due to cricket, he has seen his children only on video calls.
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Hong Kong teams have stayed in the last three months, Namibia, Uganda and Jersey (for ICC event), South Africa and England (for practice), Zimbabwe (for T20 World Cup Qualifier), Oman (for Asia Cup Qualifier) and has now reached UAE for the Asia Cup. Where it will face India and Pakistan in the group-stage. That is, the players of Hong Kong have sacrificed a lot to play cricket.
Coach also impressed by the dedication of the players
Coach Trent Johnson is also enamored of the dedication and passion of the Hong Kong players. In a conversation with ESPNcricinfo, he said, ‘The money that most of the players in our squad get from Cricket Hong Kong is not enough to run their house. That’s why players have to do other things too. In such a situation, players have only limited time to play cricket. In that we try to do the best preparation we can.
car parking, hong kong players training at home
Johnson has been the captain of the Ireland cricket team. He said, ‘During the era of Corona, we saw lockdown 6 times. Players could not train for 1 year. He used to take part in strength and conditioning sessions over video calls at his homes, car parking and parks. The dedication he showed towards cricket is phenomenal. He never questioned or complained about anything, he just kept on training.
Many players work as food delivery boys
We lost a lot of cricket time due to the pandemic. This has been a problem for the players who, apart from cricket, also do other things to run the family.
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Coach Johnson further said, ‘Three or four of our players give private coaching of cricket. He is also associated with the club. Most of the players of the team work as food delivery boys. The vice-captain of the team, Kinchit Shah, has a diamond business. Scott McEnany has his own business, so he has more time to play cricket. Young fast bowler Ayush Shukla is studying in the university. Some players are doing other jobs.
All of them have sacrificed a lot to play cricket in the last 3 months. His wives, girlfriends and children are waiting for him. But, not a single player told me that we have to return home. It means a lot to people. We deserve to play against teams like India and Pakistan in the Asia Cup. We are not here just to play. We will try to make a difference here.
Tags: Asia cup, Hindi Cricket News, hong kong, Indian cricket, Rohit Sharma
FIRST PUBLISHED : August 31, 2022, 06:03 IST