Jammu: With young Parvez Rasool etching his name into record books after being named in the Indian squad for the upcoming ODI series against Zimbabwe, JKCA and former cricketers on Friday termed his selection as a historic day for the state and said his elevation will open up doors for many other youngsters of the region.
"I am extremely happy on his success. He has reached here by the dint of his hard work. I wish him best of luck and pray for his good performance and victory of the Indian team in the forthcoming series in Zimbabwe," Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association (JKCA) president, Farooq Abdullah said.
The 24-year-old all-rounder today created history by becoming the first cricketer from Jammu and Kashmir to be named in the Indian team as the selectors opted to rest captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and four other key players for the upcoming ODI tour of Zimbabwe.
The budding cricketer from South Kashmir's Bijbihara area has been in contention for national selection for a while now and he got the nod in the 15-member squad after the selectors decided to rest off spinner Ravichandran Ashwin for the five-match ODI series, to be held from July 24 to August 3 at Harare and Bulawayo.
"It is a great thing for me. No news can be bigger for a coach than his ward being selected in the Indian team. It is the happiest day of my life. I feel today that I have accomplished my goal, the hardwork that we put in has paid off," an elated Abdul Qayoom, who has seen Rasool grow as a cricketer from close quarters, told PTI.
Asked what does it mean for J&K cricket, Qayoom who also belongs to Bijbihara said: "It has opened the doors for J&K cricketers and I believe that in future you will see many more cricketers from the state in action at the highest level."
Once considered to be the poster boy of J&K cricket, Qayoom said through Rasool he has achieved his unfulfilled goal of representing India.
"As I have told you it is a great day for me. Through Parvez I have achieved all that I wanted to," he said.
The childhood coach of Rasool was ecstatic at Rasool's inclusion into the team.
"He has always been an international talent and by virtue of his devotion and dedication to the game he has achieved this target. His passion and sincerity towards the game has paid off. I am sure he will also make a mark at the international level and cement his place in the Indian team," said Rajesh Dhar.
Meanwhile, Rasool's teammate and contemporary Iandev Singh said that the all-rounder has made it to the Indian team on pure merit and he will continue to do good at the highest level.
"We were expecting him to be a part of the national team and he has achieved his target by working hard towards his goal. He has made his entry into the Indian team purely on merit and I am sure he will continue to do good at the highest level.
"It has alaways been a great feeling playing alongside him and I am hopeful that he will make it big at the top level also," Iandev said.
"He is a disciplined boy. He is very sensitive and concentrates on his game. He is a cultured young boy who minds his own business with utmost sincerity. His personality traits have played a great role in his elevation to the Indian side," added JKCA treasurer, Manzoor Amhad Wazir.
Wazir said that Rasool's selection will open up new vistas for J&K cricketers.
"There is no dearth of talent, I see no reason why our cricketers cannot make it big with some more hardwork and exposure. It will open up a new channel for our boys and we are hopeful that more players will make it to the international level," he said.
"It is a great feeling... We have contributed something to our country. For the first time a young boy from the state has made it to the national team," added former general secretary of JKCA, M L Nehru.