Rajasthan Royals' Chetan Sakariya loses his father to Covid-19
Kanjibhai Sakariya, the father of Rajasthan Royals fast bowler Chetan Sakariya, died in Bhavnagar, Gujarat, on Sunday from Covid-19.
Kanjibhai had tested positive while his son was playing in IPL 2021, and is the second family member Sakariya has lost this year. Weeks before the IPL auction in February, his younger brother Rahul died by suicide.
He was undergoing treatment for the deadly virus in a Gujarat hospital but lost the battle days after Chetan, who shot to limelight through his exploits in IPL 2021, visited him and expected hope his father will be able to recover soon.
Sakariya was bought by the Royals for INR 1.2 crore (USD 164,000 approx) and it was a good investment for them as the 23-year-old uncapped left-armer consistently impressed in the tournament before it was postpone.
“It is unfortunate and our prayers with the family at this time,” news agency ANI quoted an unnamed RR official as saying on Sunday.
The left-arm pacer was playing in Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy when he lost his brother in January this year.
In an interview, the 22-year-old Sakariya said the payment he received from his IPL franchise Rajasthan Royals was being used for helping his family in their ‘toughest time’.
“I was lucky because I had received my part payment from Rajasthan Royals a few days ago. I straight away transferred money back home, and that is helping my family the most in my toughest time,” Sakariya told The Indian Express.
Sakariya further said he’s the only breadwinner in his family with cricket the lone source of income.
Had IPL not happened for even a month, it would have been tougher for him.
“People are saying stop IPL. I want to tell them something, I am the only bread earner in my family. Cricket is the only source of my earnings. I can give better treatment to my father because of the money I earned from IPL. Had this tournament not happened for a month, it would have been tougher for me. I come from a poor family, my father all his life drove tempo and because of IPL my whole life was about to change,” said the youngster.
Among other Indian players at the IPL to have family affected by Covid-19 was Chennai Super Kings captain MS Dhoni, whose parents tested positive, and Delhi Capitals spinner R Ashwin, who left the IPL after several of his family tested positive.
India women's batter Veda Krishnamurthy lost both her mother and sister to the virus.