Tamil Nadu cricketer takes field within 72 hours of father’s death, pays tribute with five-for

In a display of tremendous character and resilience, L. Sathiyannaarayan put personal tragedy aside and performed what his father would have loved him to do.

It was only at the end of his spell on Monday that Sathiya cried. “I knew my father was watching from above. He would always come to the ground to see me play,” he said to Sportstar.

Putting mind over matter and not being weighed down by an irreparable loss, Sathiya sent down an effective spell of off-spin that fetched him five for 41 for India Pistons against UFCC (T. Nagar) at the CPT-IP ground in the TNCA first division league.

The 25-year-old Sathiya had lost his father, K. Lakshminarasimhan, who succumbed to a heart attack on the night of May 27 after waging a courageous battle.

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“My father suffered a heart attack on May 22 and was shifted to the ICU of a prominent hospital. He was conscious and kept communicating with us. Keen, even in that condition that my cricket should not suffer, he told me to go for matches.”

Sathiya continued, “My father was passionate about my cricket. In fact, he left his touring job and worked in a more stationary role so that he could guide me in cricket. We would talk about cricket 24/7.”

On taking the field on Monday, Sathiya said, “It was tough. It was not easy. My head was swirling with emotions as I entered the ground today. Then I realised my father would be watching me.”

And when the brave Sathiya bowled on Monday, he was paying homage to his beloved father.

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