The Shamar Joseph story: Guyana boy who used fruits for ball, quit security job to become cricketer | 5 Points

AB de Villiers's wanted fans to read Joseph's life story, this is why

Shamar-Joseph-ap West Indies's Shamar Joseph raises the ball after taking 7 wickets against Australia | AP

Last year, Shamar Joseph was yet to play a first-class game. Today, he is a cricket icon in the West Indies. On Sunday, the seamer shrugged off injury to bowl at express pace for nearly 12 overs straight in Brisbane, claiming 7/68 as West Indies stunned Australia by eight runs to get their first test win Down Under since 1997.

The debutant is receiving accolades from all over the cricketing world for his match-winning prowess despite suffering an injury the day before. Notable in particular was South Africa great AB de Villiers's post on X applauding Joseph. "The Shamar Joseph fairytale! Special scenes. Do yourself a favour, go read about his life on wikipedia! Literally had tears in my eyes while reading about his journey. Inspirational to say the least," Mr 360 jotted.

After going through the Caribbean player's life story, one ABD is not wrong. Here is a briefing of what makes Shamar Joseph's journey to top-tier cricket extraordinary in five points:

1. Shamar Joseph, 24, hails from the maroon village of Baracara in Guyana. Home to over 400 people, Shamar's native place is two hours away by boat from the nearest city – New Amsterdam. Telephones were the popular means of communication in the village, which reportedly got internet for the first time in 2018.

2. The people of the remote village knew only two games Dominoes and cricket. And like most country kids, Shamar picked up the basics of the game by playing in available places around him. There were no proper cricket grounds so Shamar Joseph and chums played in little patches of ground by their homes. The kids reportedly called it "jungle-land cricket."

3. Cricket bats and balls were unavailable during their childhood, Shamar's cousin Orlando Tanner reportedly told the Indian Express. They used fruits to play with. And when they couldn't find any, Shamar Joseph's gang patiently melted plastic from bottles to make balls. 

4. Lack of money and kits were not the only issue. Like most parents, his parents were not happy about his cricket plans. He was bound to religious dictums and his parents wanted the boy to devote Saturdays entirely to Chruch, Tanner told Indian Express. Cricket or any other form of entertainment was prohibited. Shamar could only start training full-time after he turned an adult.

5. Shamar Joseph moved to the port city of New Amsterdam in search of a job. Although he kept his cricketing dreams alive, he worked 12-hour shifts on guard duty and also said yes to construction work. Eventually, he decided to quit his job assignments to pursue a cricket career. He was supported by his as he took the leap of faith. 

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