IT WILL BE homecoming for Delhi batsman Mithun Manhas, who is set to move from his current team, Delhi, to Jammu and Kashmir for the forthcoming domestic season.
As a teenager, Manhas had left his home state in search of greener pastures and that’s when he landed at Delhi.
"It's a sort of mixed bag emotions," Manhas told ESPNcricinfo. "While it was difficult to move on from Delhi where my cricket career has shaped up, I am delighted to be joining Jammu and Kashmir. Not only is it my home team but also because the team has been doing quite well in the domestic circuit over the last couple of years. I hope I can help them take their games to the next level."
Manhas, who plays for the Chennai Super Kings in the IPL, made his first-class debut in the 1997-98 season, alongside the likes of Virender Sehwag, Ashish Nehra and others. A run machine of sorts, Manhas has score more than 9000 runs in first-class cricket at a commendable average of 45-plus. Leaving Delhi was something he did not regret.
"I spoke with Chetan Chauhan [the former India opener, who is now a DDCA vice-president] and he told me I could help groom Delhi youngsters," Manhas said. "But I thought there are plenty of youngsters who are ready to shoulder more responsibility, so I should not stick around.”
"Moreover, experienced players like Rajat Bhatia and Gautam Gambhir will ensure the youngsters will be taken care of even in Viru's [Sehwag, who has moved to Haryana] and my absence."
Manhas is currently just 89 runs short of becoming the fourth batsman to score 8000 runs in the Ranji Trophy. In doing so, he will be joining the elite club consisting of batsmen like Wasim Jaffer (9759 runs), Amol Muzumdar (9202 runs) and Hrishikesh Kanitkar (8059 runs). The batsman has plenty to look forward to in the season that starts on October 1.