Team India pacer Mohammed Shami recently made a shocking revelation where he conceded to one-day vice-captain Rohit Sharma that he contemplated suicide as many as three times when he was going through a massive low in both his personal and professional life. It may be recalled that in March 2018, Shami’s wife Hasin Jahan accused the cricketer of cheating and torture, and also filed a complaint against the cricketer and his family, alleging they tried to kill her by giving her a heavy dose of sleeping pills. Things got worse a few days later when Shami met with a road accident on his way to Delhi from Dehradun and ended up suffering head injuries. The 29-year-old, however, fought against all his nemesis, immersed himself in cricket training, and has emerged a big, better player. Here’s a closer look at Shami’s spectacular renaissance.
Playing 2015 World Cup with pain
While Shami had an incredibly successful 2015 World Cup, his troubles actually began here, in a sense. Shami played the entire World Cup with a knee injury that he picked up during India’s Test series against the Aussies prior to the World Cup. Shami kept getting discomforting swelling on his knees in between matches. Two days before every game, the pacer would have to get fluids sucked out of the knee, then practice the day before the World Cup match, and then play. In spite of going through so much, Shami still managed to finish the tournament as India’s second-highest wicket-taker, with 17 scalps at 17.29 and an economy rate of 4.81. It is an incredible story that doesn’t get the plaudits it deserves. The price Shami had to play for putting in that extra effort was losing out on 18 months of international cricket.
Impressive comeback overshadowed by shocking controversy
During his rehab, Shami’s daughter was born, and the fast bowler stated that this blessing helped him stay calm amid testing times. After a long break, the Bengal pacer made a comeback during the Test series in West Indies in July 2016. Shami was back among the wickets right away, picking up four wickets each at North Sound and Kingston. Over the next few months, Shami began to re-establish himself in the Test team with impressive performances against New Zealand and England at home, and Sri Lanka (home and away). He played a pivotal role in India’s famous Test win over South Africa at Johannesburg in January 2018. Shami blew away the Proteas with figures of 5 for 28 in the fourth innings as the hosts crumbled to 177 in a chase of 241.
Things were beginning to look up for Shami once again. However, the good times weren’t to last long as his wife soon dropped a bomb, accusing him of having extra-marital affairs with multiple women. Soon, Shami was in the news for all the wrong reasons. His BCCI contract was also under a cloud as he was being interrogated by the cops in connection with the criminal case filed by his wife against him. Even before Shami could figure out what was happening to his life, he met with an accident and ended up with a few stitches. Not many gave Shami a chance of returning to his best from these horrendous circumstances.
Passion and Perseverance
It wouldn’t have been surprising had Shami faded away following the turbulent times he was subjected to. However, with his family standing completely in support behind him, Shami kept playing the game with greater passion and dedication. Even as the off-field controversies carried on for a while, Shami’s single-minded ambition to prove his worth as a cricketer all over again enabled him to keep all the distractions at bay. Over the last year-and-a-half, Shami has turned himself into a world-class match-winner irrespective of the conditions. His stunning fall and incredible rise are inspirational in every sense. Yet to turn 30, Shami has plenty to offer to Indian cricket, if he can maintain the high standards he has set for himself.