Gautam Gambhir Recalls His Resolute Journey From Rejecting Tradition to Overcoming Misconceptions
By CricShots - May 21, 2024 6:32 pm
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India cricket legend Gautam Gambhir recently opened up about a formative incident from his teenage years that significantly influenced his outlook on respect and personal integrity. In a conversation with India offspinner Ravichandran Ashwin on Ashwin’s YouTube channel, Gambhir shared a story about being denied selection for an under-14 cricket tournament simply because he refused to touch the selector’s feet.

Gautam Gambhir
Gautam Gambhir got emotional

Recalling the event, Gautam Gambhir said, “When I was growing up, maybe when I was 12 or 13 years old, I didn’t get selected for my first under-14 tournament because I didn’t touch the selector’s feet. From that moment, I promised myself that I would never touch anyone’s feet, and I do not let anyone touch my feet.”

This incident left a lasting impression on him, shaping his principles and the way he approached respect and self-respect throughout his life and career. Gautam Gambhir had a distinguished career with the Indian cricket team, representing the nation in 58 Tests, 147 ODIs, and 37 T20Is between 2003 and 2016.

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Gautam Gambhir amassed a total of 10,324 runs across these formats, including 20 centuries and 63 half-centuries. Gambhir was instrumental in India’s triumphs in two World Cup tournaments: the 2007 ICC World T20 and the 2011 ODI World Cup, where he was the top scorer for India in both finals, cementing his legacy as one of India’s cricketing greats.

Gautam Gambhir
Gautam Gambhir

Despite his success, Gambhir had to overcome significant misconceptions about his dedication to cricket. Growing up in a financially well-off family, many assumed he didn’t need to work hard or that he had other career options readily available.

Reflecting on this, he said, “Throughout my career, every time I failed—whether in under-16, under-19, Ranji Trophy, or even early in my international career—people would say, ‘You come from a wealthy family, you don’t need to play cricket. You can just join your dad’s business.’”

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This perception, Gambhir explained, was the most challenging hurdle he faced. “People didn’t realize that I wanted it more than them. I wanted to beat that perception. Once I did, no other perception ever bothered me. The toughest perception for me to overcome was proving that I wanted cricket harder than any of them,” he concluded.

Through his resilience and determination, Gambhir not only disproved these assumptions but also demonstrated his unwavering passion and commitment to cricket. His journey serves as an inspiring testament to overcoming societal expectations and staying true to one’s values.