Rana looks to make most of his second chance
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With a hundred and two fifties in the Cooch Behar season so far, Delhi's middle order batsman Nitish Rana has had a decent U-19 season. The left handed batsman though is far from satisfied. With this being his final year in the U-19 age category, he is desperate to make his chance count. He is motivated by what happened to him two seasons back. In 2010, the then 17-year-old broke into the probables for the U-19 World Cup one which would go on to make a name of Delhi mate Unmukt Chand in Australia. Rana as one of the probables was attending a training camp at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bangalore when he fractured his small finger of his left hand during a fielding session. The break was a complete one, forcing him to undergo surgery. The doctors had to straighten the finger with the help of a metal plate. It has been almost a year and half but Rana still can't bend his finger. He holds the bat with three fingers.
The trauma was devastating for young Rana. He had earned the honours of attending the national U-19 camp after a superb season but the injury not only marred his chances for a place in the India U-19 squad but also saw him struggling to recover at a fast pace for his state team. "At first, I would fear even the thought of holding the bat. I kept thinking that the finger will break again. I just had to be patient and let the finger fix. But even after it healed, it took me months just to hold the bat," said Rana.
As his finger healed, Rana started visiting his academy and began practice."My coach Sanjay Bhardwaj helped me a lot in that difficult time. He used to make bowlers throw balls at me at a very slow pace so that I could only make contact with the ball properly. Sometimes when the ball hit the upper part of the bat, my finger used to feel the pain. But thankfully, our team physio had given me a finger covering that was very firm and prevented my finger from the experiencing most of the shock," Rana added.
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