Pain, passion and purpose

27 Nov, 2022 - 00:11 0 Views
Pain, passion and purpose

The Sunday Mail

Don Makanyanga
Sports Reporter

FOR cricketer Faraz Akram, overcoming a career-threatening injury and returning to the field of play is all about pain, passion and purpose.

The Eagles player and Zimbabwe all-rounder says he loves cricket so much that he could do anything to play. Yet, he suffered a career-threatening injury more than a year ago.

In a bid to save a boundary during a T20 match against Tuskers, the 29-year-old Pakistan-born athlete landed awkwardly and suffered a dislocated shoulder.

Such was the gravity of the injury that he thought his career had prematurely ended.

“I did not know if I was going to hold a bat again; I did not know if I was going to hold a cricket ball again, or if I was going to be back to do what I love doing, which is playing cricket,” recalls Akram.

In his soul-searching journey, he had to focus on the positives and switched off from cricket activities.

“When I got injured, the first thing I had to tell myself was to get well, and I did not think of the season or games ahead.

“I had a good conversation with my ex-Eagles coach (Stuart Matsikinyire) and made a plan that we take the recovery day by day and see how it goes, and if things don’t work out, we move on with our lives,” he said.

“I had to think about the recovery and forgot about cricket, as I did not want to put myself under pressure. It was slow progress. Cricket was not on my mind; it was more about my recovery,” he said.

After surgery, his painful road to recovery was not an easy one.

“It was a very painful operation . . . which required me to have a strong mentality.”

He credits Chevrons assistant coach Matsikinyire for playing a pivotal role in his quick return.

“My doctors, my physios did some great work.

“When I could move my shoulder, Matsikinyire helped me a lot with my recovery, and, slowly but surely, I came back from the dead,” he said.

After his recovery, Akram chose the T10 cricket tournament to taste the waters.

It was just the tonic he needed, as the T10 tourney gave him confidence going into the local 2022-2023 season.

“I feel playing in the T10 tournament gave me a lot of confidence that my shoulder was now fit and ready to go.”

With the cricket season now in full swing and in its second period, Akram, without any injury worries, has every reason to smile.

“It is difficult to put into words how happy I am to be playing this season after making a full recovery and playing a sport which is my passion,” said Akram.

He is now working hard to bounce back into the national team.

He also revealed how fellow cricketer Sikandar Raza supported him.

“I have always looked up to him.

“When he was playing, we were still coming up. He is like a big brother to me and always gives me advice on what to do and what not to do, and demands a lot from me. When I slacken, he is the first to shout at me and try to put me on the right path,” said Akram.

Twitter: @Donmakanyanga2


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