ON SATURDAY afternoon, as 22-year-old Abhijeet Garg completed his triple hundred against Delhi in the Col C K Nayudu Trophy at IS Bindra PCA Stadium, Garg’s feat was also watched by his uncle Ashwani Garg. With his younger brother 20-year-old Aditya Garg admitted to Sector 6 hospital in Panchlula with low blood platelets due to dengue fever, Abhijeet’s parents Pankaj Garg and Sunita Garg missed watching their son achieve the record and at the end of the day’s play, Abhijeet’s first reaction was to call his father after his knock of 310 runs. “Scoring a triple hundred in my third game for Punjab means a lot for me. When I was playing, my focus was on my batting. My parents told me not to worry as Aditya will recover soon. After my double hundred yesterday, he told me that I played well and I should bat well today as well. I wanted to capiltalise on yesterday’s double hundred. The way I was batting, my target was 400 but that’s cricket. I talked to Sanvir Singh about playing with patience initially. It was good to share a record second-wicket partnership for Punjab team,” said 22-year-old Abhijeet, who is doing LLB at Panjab University.
A native of Dhuri, Punjab, Abhijeet shifted to Chandigarh in 2009 at the insistence of his uncle Ashwani Garg, an advocate, and trained under Chandigarh coach Sanjiv Pathania before training under Mohali coach Sukhwinder Tinku. Two years later, the Garg family too would shift from Punjab to Sector 22, Chandigarh, as the youngster made his presence felt on the Punjab junior circuit. Earlier this year, Abhijeet played a knock of 197 runs for Mohali against Jalandhar in the Punjab Inter-District Katoch Shield tournament. Last year, Punjab had won the C K Nayudu trophy with victory over Andhra Pradesh at Patiala.
“Abhijeet started cricket at the insistence of my younger brother Ashwani Garg and we did not hesitate to send him to Chandigarh for training in 2009. Last evening, when he had come home after his double century, he was worried about Aditya. We had also planned to watch the match today but with Aditya’s platelet count coming low, we had to miss. We told him to concentrate on his match and this triple hundred shows his dedication. We do not have words to express our feelings on his achievement,” said 50-year-old Pankaj Garg, who is a district attorney in the Panchkula court. Punjab U-23 had won the Col C K Nayudu trophy last season with a win over Andhra Pradesh. Abhijeet’s triple hundred was the tournament’s highest score in the last three years. He also stitched together a record 492-run second-wicket partnership with Patiala batsman Sanvir Singh as Punjab posted a total of 723 for 5 in 217 overs. “It was a superb innings from Abhijeet. Playing in his third game, he smashed a triple hundred. He came to bat on the first day and batted till tea on the third day which shows that he has a lot of patience. His strength has been his patience and when he got the chance, Abhijeet showed that. He is a good find for Punjab cricket and Sanvir too showed maturity during his double hundred,” said 53-year-old Punjab U-23 coach Sunil Saggi.