Mohammed Siraj ecstatic after winning Impact fielder medal

In a thrilling T20I series between India and South Africa, the spotlight wasn’t just on the bat and ball but also on the fielding prowess displayed by the Indian team. Following the success of the Fielding Medal concept at the 2023 World Cup, the Indian camp introduced a revamped version named the ‘Impact Fielder of the Series’ for their clash against South Africa.

The alteration in the approach saw the recognition move from a match-by-match basis to a celebration of consistent alertness and game-changing impact throughout the series. T Dilip, the fielding coach, nominated three outstanding fielders – Rinku Singh, Yashasvi Jaiswal, and Mohammed Siraj – for their exceptional contributions, before handing the medal over to Siraj.

“We often talk about making a difference in the field. Not just in one match, but throughout the series. And the perseverance at which he worked throughout the World Cup and the still the way, after he bowls an over, comes back, dives and throws the ball back. Today he made a difference with his direct hit, yesterday, boundary line awareness catch. The winner would be none other than – Mohammed Siraj,” Dilip said.

Siraj’s catch off Reeza Hendricks shifted momentum towards India

Mohammed Siraj’s moment in the sun came in Johannesburg during the second T20I when he showcased his brilliance by dismissing opener Reeza Hendricks for a mere 8 runs. His crucial catch, which saw Hendricks departing early in the fourth over, spurred a South African collapse as they stumbled to a paltry 95 while chasing India’s formidable 201/7.

With the series culminating in a 1-1 draw, Siraj’s impact stood out, earning him the prestigious ‘Impact Fielder of the Series’ accolade. His infectious joy was evident as he received the medal from T Dilip, playfully attempting to bite it before sharing a heartfelt embrace with the coach.

“Should I say something? This is not a medal… I was waiting for this medal since the World Cup and I have finally got it. The lesson to take away from here is – never give up,” said Siraj.