Sheldon Jackson is just like any other cricketer. He wants to play for India and just like any other citizen of the country, he wants to protect his family in these uncertain times. In an exclusive interview, he told CricketNext that how no domestic cricket not only makes things harder for him to present his case for the national call up, but also severely dents his savings.
“Ultimately when savings start reducing, I have been through that phase so I know, it puts you in a very dark space and you get worried about your future. It is tough at the moment. We all talk about men’s first class cricketers. But no one is talking about women cricketers. Even they have families to run. In our country, they broke barriers to become sportspersons. There are so many girls now who want to become like a Mithali Raj. So many women cricketers can be taken care if or be given contracts by associations. So that they can take care of their needs and continue playing the game with the same passion. Women’s cricket actually brings so much of joy."
Rapid rise of Covid case made sure that cricket was no longer possible under normal circumstances. However, the BCCI managed to hold Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 and Vijay Hazare Trophy this year, but the oldest and the most iconic Ranji Trophy tournament was last played when everything was OK—March 2020.
“It has pushed many players, because of Ranji not happening. Many senior players look to play red ball, and with that not happening, they have to generate some kind of revenue to take care of themselves and their families. Nowadays, everything has become so so expensive, and even in today’s times many (players) are not blessed with jobs. If Ranji doesn’t happen, then you don’t know how you’ll provide for your family."
This is where the IPL contract was a life-saver for Jackson.
“If you’re above 30, you’re likely to be married and mostly you’ll have kids. You have to take care of your growing family. I have a kid, so I know how difficult it is at times. I also would have been in a similar position, but this year, I’m lucky to have an IPL contract. So it has given me that monetary cushion if Ranji Trophy doesn’t happen."