Nikhil Chaudhary's fascinating journey: From failing Mumbai Indians trials to the latest Big Bash League sensation!

Nikhil is only the second India-born cricketer to secure a BBL contract. 
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Former India U-19 cricket player, Nikhil Chaudhary has risen from relative obscurity to prominence with his impressive all-round display for the Hobart Hurricanes in the Big Bash League (BBL). His recent standout performances against Melbourne Stars and Sydney Thunder, where he scored a quick 32 off 16 balls and took two wickets, emphasize his potential in the T20 format.

Chaudhary's cricket journey began in Delhi, his birthplace and continued in Punjab, where he was brought up. Initially aspiring to emulate the fast-bowling style of his idol, Australian cricketer Brett Lee, destiny guided him toward becoming an all-rounder where he excelled both with both bat and ball. His growth as a player was significantly influenced by playing alongside Indian cricketing legends Harbhajan Singh and Yuvraj Singh.

Speaking of his experiences, while playing in the Punjab team with former India legends, Nikhl revealed, "There was an immense pressure to play under such a big, big name. In India, cricket is totally different. People call them [star players] gods for a reason. I was nervous because he [Harbhajan] was a very strong figure, but when I got to know him, he was very humble."

He added about Yuvraj, "I learned a lot of things from him, like how to build an innings, tackle big targets and how to go deep into the innings. I knew my capability of scoring runs at any stage of the game. I really wanted to crack the IPL and also play for India."

Nikhil's fortunes changed during Covid-19 pandemic

Despite facing early career obstacles, including unsuccessful trials with the Mumbai Indians (MI) IPL team in 2019, Chaudhary remained undeterred. 

A trip to Australia during the COVID-19 pandemic turned into a new opportunity, where he embraced Australian culture and cricket by playing club cricket for Northern Suburbs.

Balancing his cricketing ambitions with a job as a courier for Australia Post, Chaudhary's time at Northern Suburbs proved transformative. Recognizing his potential, former Australian cricketer James Hopes, his coach, recommended him to the Hobart Hurricanes. This endorsement resulted in Chaudhary securing a BBL contract, making him only the second India-born cricketer after Unmukt Chand to feature in the league. His performances not only justified this decision but also showcased his capabilities and potential as a formidable T20 player.

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Chaudhary's journey, from a young boy dreaming of emulating Brett Lee to failing MI trials to becoming a noted all-rounder in the BBL, is a testament to his resilience and passion. 

Credit- ESPNCricinfo

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