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‘Whole Australia is my family’ – Rashid Khan

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Rashid Khan has played through the pain of losing his father and come out with brilliant performances for his Big Bash League team Adelaide Strikers.

His 2-34 against Sydney Thunder on New Year’s Eve, and 1-18 and seven-ball 21* against Melbourne Renegades on 3 January resulted in victory for his team. Khan revealed that his family had insisted that he play on in Australia and fulfil his commitment to the Strikers.

“He really supported us, he struggled a lot while giving up [a lot for us],” Khan said of his father. “He was always watching my games, he didn’t understand cricket a lot but he just was always asking my family how I had done.”

Consoling himself by saying “it happens in life”, Khan revealed how his family asked him to carry on in Australia instead of returning to Afghanistan to be with them.

“They were calling me again and again. They were like, ‘you have to be there, you have to play for us, you have to play for your dad. We can see you’re sad, you’re alone there, you’re [far] from home’. That’s how their motivation helped to stay here and play for the Strikers,” Khan said.

And while Khan has been subdued since the game on 31 December, he was touched by the support he received from his team-mates, fans, and fellow Afghanistan teammate Mohammad Nabi, who is playing for the Renegades.

Nabi, he said, consoled him over a pot of green tea. “He said, ‘It’s life – someone will go, someone will come. We all will go one day. It’s not like we will be here for all of time.

“The way the team, my captain, my coaches, my management – the way they supported me has been great,” Khan added. “They were in my room until late (after the New Year’s Eve game), encouraging me. I really love that – that kept me alive there, fresh and fine. They were coming to me after five minutes and hugging me.

“I didn’t feel like I’m alone here. The whole Australia is my family, everyone is looking after me very closely and very friendly and like a family member. They give me lots of love and I didn’t feel myself to be alone here. I just keep in a good energy.”

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