Punjab Kings batsman Ashutosh Sharma is the new Indian batting sensation who has garnered headlines with his brilliant performances in the Indian Premier League. Born in Ratlam, Ashutosh plays for Railways in domestic cricket and scored 61 runs from 28 balls, including two fours and seven sixes during his stay at the crease. Ashutosh nearly finished the match for the Kings but ended up getting out in the 19th over to Gerald Coetzee.  While the Indian Premier League has proven to be a platform for Ashutosh Sharma to showcase his batting prowess, things weren't easy for the right-handed 25-year-old batsman. As per ESPNcricinfo, Ashutosh had to leave his hometown for his cricketing future and moved to Indore when he was just eight. Living in a small house, there were times when Sharma didn't even have food to eat, but joining the MPCA academy in Indore proved to be a turning point in his life under coach Amay Khurasiya. In a conversation with ESPNcricinfo, Ashutosh opened up about his early days in cricket. Ashutosh Sharma Quick Facts: Here’s All You Need To Know About Punjab Kings’ Power Hitter in IPL 2024.

Ashutosh Sharma said, "In 2019 I scored 84 runs in my last game for MP against Puducherry. Then next year, there was a professional coach who came in and he had his likes and dislikes. He did not like me and sat me out of the team. I went into depression", Ashutosh didn't reveal the name of the coach.

He added, "I stayed at the hotel for one to two months. I was not even able to see the ground. All I did was go to the gym and come back to the room. I got really frustrated and slipped into depression. It was tough to come out of that. I kept thinking, where did I go wrong? I could not sleep for days. No one even said anything. I was driven out of the set-up without explanation. Those two to three years were pretty bad." Ashutosh Sharma Sweeps Jasprit Bumrah for a Six en Route to Maiden IPL Fifty During PBKS vs MI IPL 2024 Match (Watch Video),

Ashutosh Sharma played his age group cricket for Madhya Pradesh and later made his debut in 2018 in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy. He ended up being the highest run scorer for Madhya Pradesh with 233 runs and three half-centuries. Things were going pretty smoothly for Sharma when he was excluded from the Madhya Pradesh squad without any proper explanation. Ashutosh stated that the then-MP coach didn't like him and he used to let him sit in the hotel throughout the day. All, he used to do was go to the gym and come back, which was depressing for him and the latter slipped into depression.

Ashutosh Sharma was given another break by Railways when he was offered a job and made his debut in 2023. Due to the injustice he faced in the MPCA, he missed four major years of playing domestic cricket. Ashutosh smashed an 11 fifty against Arunachal Pradesh which also attracted the Punjab Kings and he was picked at a base price of INR 20 lakh at the auction.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 19, 2024 04:54 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).