Young India pacer Mohammed Siraj declined BCCI’s offer to return to India after his father died on Friday. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) Jay Shah said that Siraj that the cricket board had a discussion with the fast bowler with an option of flying back home to be with his family in these testing times.

Siraj’s father, Mohammed Ghouse died due to lung ailment in Hyderabad. Siraj got the news of his father’s demise after the returning from the training session in Sydney on Friday.

“The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had a discussion with Siraj and he was offered the option of flying back and be with his family in this hour of grief,” Shah was quoted as saying in a BCCI media release.

“The fast bowler has decided to stay with the Indian contingent and continue performing his national duties. The BCCI shares his grief and will be supportive of Siraj in this extremely challenging phase,” Shah added.

BCCI president Sourav Ganguly also took to Twitter to laud Siraj for his resilience and mental fortitude in this hour of tragedy. The former India captain wished him success for the upcoming Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

“May Mohammed siraj have a lot of strength to overcome this loss..lots of good wishes for his success in this trip… tremendous character,” Ganguly tweeted.

After his father’s demise, Siraj said that he was his biggest support and he worked immensely hard to let him pursue his passion for cricket.

“I know what kind of hardship my dad faced in my early days driving an auto-rickshaw to let me pursue my passion for the game. It is shocking. I lost the biggest support of my life. It was his dream to see me play for the country and I am glad that way I could realise that and bring joy for him,” Siraj told Sportstar.

Siraj first came into limelight with 41 wickets for Hyderabad in Ranji Trophy, followed by a record Rs 2.6 crore IPL deal from Sunrisers Hyderabad as an uncapped player. Later the right-arm pacer joined Royal Challengers Bangalore, for whom he picked 11 wickets in 9 games in recently concluded IPL 2020, which earned him the maiden Test call-up for India.