Ojha gets warm welcome in Orissa for Test team debut

July 11th, 2008 - 8:19 pm ICT by IANS  

Bhubaneswar, July 11 (IANS) Hundreds of fans and sports lovers greeted him with flowers when cricketer Pragyan Ojha Friday arrived at Orissa capital Bhubaneswar after his selection in the Indian cricket team. The 21-year-old Ojha, who arrived here from Mumbai, was taken in a procession by his fans and friends from Bhubaneswar airport to city’s Saheed Sporting Club where hundreds of his friends greeted him with garlands.

The left-arm spinner began his cricket career at the age of 13 in this city. Later in the day, Ojha was also felicited by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik at the state secretariat.

“Every cricketer dreams to play as a member of national team and it is a great feeling for me that I got the opportunity. I will try to perform the best,” Ojha told his friends and fans. “Selection for Test series against Sri Lanka is an achievement of my career,” he said.

Born in Khordha near Bhubaneswar, Ojha played many junior tournaments in the state for the Saheed sporting club from 1996 to 2000. He went to Hyderabad for higher studies, but eventually became a promising cricketer.

His family lives in Bhubaneswar. His father Maheswar Ojha works in the Orissa government and his mother Bidulata is a homemaker. His younger brother Prateek is studying in a college in Hyderabad.

Pragyan is the fourth cricketer from Orissa to be selected to play in the Indian cricket team after Shiv Sunder Das, Debashis Mohanty and Sanjay Roul.

“We are proud of him and we are confident he will perform well in all matches,” Saheed Sporting secreatry Pankaj Patnaik told IANS.

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