Harmeet Singh to play for Mumbai Under-25 in Col C K Nayudu Trophy

Harmeet Singh was part of victorious Under-19 World Cup team in Australia © Getty Images

Rajasthan Royals spinner Harmeet Singh was a relieved man. The 21-year-old Mumbaikar tells Derek Abraham he just wants to play now.

You must be relieved…

Absolutely. I just stepped out of the gurudwara.

So who was there at the hearing?

Mr N Srinivasan, Mr Arun Jaitley and Mr Niranjan Shah were present. Also, there was Professor Ratnakar Shetty and Mr Ravi Sawani. And someone was taking down whatever was being spoken.

So what happened?

All of us (players) were sitting in a small room. One by one, we were taken into a big room where the officials were seated.

First, Amit Singh went and met them. He didn’t say a word after returning. My turn came soon and I walked in confidently. The officials were very nice to me. Mr Srinivasan introduced me as “our Under-19 World Cup hero“. It felt good. I then took my seat.

Mr Jaitley did most of the talking. He told me he knew I had done nothing wrong. 

The only problem they had with me was my failure to report Ajit Chandila’s approach.

I told them I had no idea I was taken to bookies. It’s only when the Delhi Police showed me their pictures that I realised they were bookies.

My hearing on Friday lasted barely 10 minutes and I didn’t go back to that room. 

I went out of the hotel (ITC Maurya Sheraton) and my folks drove me home.

Did you speak to the others?

Not really. We just exchanged pleasantries. What would I talk about?

When did you know you had been let off?

I saw it on the TV. Later, I heard the BCCI sent out a press release. I was relieved but not surprised. I knew I hadn’t done anything wrong.

What next? Are you planning to celebrate?

What is there to celebrate. I just want to fly back to Mumbai and start training and playing.

There’s more good news for you. While the Vidarbha Cricket Association has shut its doors on you, the Mumbai Cricket Association has welcomed you back...

Yeah, I know. I just want to play for Mumbai now (Singh could take the place of Ankeet Chavan; both are left-arm spinners).

(The writer is Principal Correspondent at DNA, where the above article first appeared)