Indian fast bowler, Mohammed Siraj, was offered by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to fly back home after his father's death on Friday (November 20), but he has decided to stay with the Indian contingent in Australia, the board confirmed on Saturday.
BCCI said in a statement, "Team India fast bowler Mohammed Siraj lost his father on Friday after a brief illness. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had a discussion with Siraj and he was offered the option of flying back and be with his family in this hour of grief,"
"The fast bowler has decided to stay with the Indian contingent and continue performing his national duties. The BCCI shares his grief and will be supportive of Siraj in this extremely challenging phase,"
"The BCCI requests the media to accord Siraj and his bereaved family members their space and privacy." the statement concluded.
Earlier in the day, BCCI President Sourav Ganguly had lauded the character of the 26-year-old fast bowler and wished him success on the tour. He wrote, "May Mohammed siraj have a lot of strength to overcome this loss..lots of good wishes for his success in this trip.. tremendous character"
Siraj is part of India's Test squad for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy and is currently in quarantine with rest of the contingent, however, the players are allowed to practice in a bio-secure arrangement until they serve the quarantine period of 14 days.
The fast bowler who has played for India in 1 ODI and 3 T20Is, has done extremely well in red-ball cricket for his state team Hyderabad, and for India A at various times. His ability to bowl at speeds close to 145kmph will make him an asset for India on the bouncy tracks in Australia.