India vs USA: EXCLUSIVE: 18 years later, American all-rounder Nisarg Patel aims for reunion with Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja | Cricket News


NEW DELHI: USA's all-rounder Nisarg Patel was just 18 years old when he traveled to Sri Lanka for the Under-19 World Cup in 2006. The tournament featured prominent players from various nations, including the current Indian captain. Rohit Sharma and versatile star Ravindra Jadeja.
Team USA, seeded in Group B with Australia, West Indies and South Africa, played three matches but unfortunately lost them all, leading to an early elimination from the tournament.
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Despite the disappointing result, Nisarg had the opportunity to meet the entire Indian team, exchanging greetings with Rohit and Jadeja before returning to the United States.
Now, 18 years later, Nisarg, who is part of the USA senior team, is looking forward to reuniting with Rohit and Jadeja.

India and the United States will face each other in their ICC T20 World Cup 2024 Match at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in New York on Wednesday.
With two wins from two matches, India is well placed to qualify for the Super Eight, while the United States will need to win one of the two remaining matches – against India or Ireland – to advance to the Super Eight. next stage of the mega-event.

TimesofIndia.com met Nisarg, who has played 41 ODIs and 21 T20Is for USA so far and spoke about meeting youngsters Rohit and Jadeja during the U-19 World Cup, cricket in USA, walk-on pitches, India clash and much more. …
The United States' performance at the T20 World Cup was remarkable…
We are very excited. We have a great opportunity to represent the United States on such a grand stage. There is nothing greater for players than representing their country at the World Cup, and that is exactly what we are doing. We have the chance to play against great teams: Pakistan and now India. We played against Ireland several times and also against Canada. But it's a completely different experience. It's special for us.
How is the popularity of cricket in the United States, a country known for its passion for the NBA, baseball and the NFL?
Many people came to watch our matches. There is a lot of buzz. This is an opportunity to bring the whole community together. As players, we just want to play cricket and enjoy every moment. That's it. This is the first time we have the opportunity to participate in such an important event like this and we are doing our best. All I want to say is that we (Team USA) all enjoy our cricket. American cricket is doing very well.

Nisarg

Nisarg Patel, American all-rounder (AFP Photo)

After beating Pakistan, USA's next match will be against India. Do you have your sights set on the wicket of any particular Indian player?
I'm not specifically targeting gamers. As a player, I like to contribute to the victory of my team. It's a very short format game. Whether it's staying tight, bowling good overs, taking crucial wickets, curbing runs, scoring runs, inflicting runouts or keeping a batsman in check, I love it. Obviously, I would like to dismiss Virat Kohli or take Rohit's wicket. But it all depends on when I play – during the Powerplay or after. I thrive in all situations. I met and interacted with Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja during the 2006 U19 World Cup and now look forward to seeing them again.
Could you highlight two key players of the Indian team?
Rohit Sharma. It can happen anywhere. And bowling, none other than Bumrah. Give him any condition or situation, he will take wickets and make you win the match. He's that kind of player.
Your link with India?
My cricket journey started in India. I was born in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, and studied in a boarding school in Vapi. I played most of my cricket in Ahmedabad before moving to the United States in 2003. I started playing cricket in the United States and got my first big opportunity to represent the United States at the Under-19 World Cup in Sri Lanka in 2006. I had the chance to play against teams like Australia and South Africa, facing players such as David Warner, Aaron Finch, Matthew Wade and many others. During the World Cup, I had the privilege of meeting and interacting with Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja as well. Experiencing international cricket at such a young age was invaluable. Subsequently, I was selected for the US senior team and have since played around 70-80 matches for them. I aspire to continue representing Team USA for as long as possible.
Who is your inspiration and why?
I started playing around the time of Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid. Initially, I admired Dada (Ganguly). He was my inspiration and a true leader. Over time, I have witnessed the era of players like MS Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh and Virat Kohli. I admire MS Dhoni immensely. I like the way he carries himself on and off the field, the way he handles players and his ability to transform games with his batting prowess. He is simply amazing and incredibly down to earth. He has contributed immensely to cricket.
In cricket, being an all-rounder, I admire Ravindra Jadeja. I play a similar role to him, being a left-arm spinner and a middle-order batsman. I watch and follow his game closely. I can't wait to meet him.
Could you share insights from your meeting with batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar and the legendary Shane Warne?
When the Legends Masters League was held in the United States, the great Shane Warne and the legendary Sachin Tendulkar were part of this league. We had the opportunity to meet them and learn some valuable cricket lessons. I served as a net bowler in that league, bowling to Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, Matthew Hayden and many other legendary players. I learned a lot from their experiences.
What do you think of free slots?
I have never played on open courts before. It's our first time. All I heard was that they were real wickets. They benefit everyone: the spinners, the fast bowlers, the batsmen. All we've heard is that these are real wickets and really exciting.
Were the United States confident of pulling off upsets against major teams, like their performance against Pakistan?
We were confident, especially with the team we have. We are a balanced team with experienced players capable of playing in any situation and condition. They can handle the pressure and make us win games. It's not easy to perform on a big stage, especially in front of a packed stadium, but our team knows how to do it. They know how to behave in any situation.



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