Sheldon Jackson has been one of the consistent performers in the domestic circuit. He is one of the four players to score more than 750 runs in a single edition of the Ranji Trophy four times. He recently expressed disappointment over the selection process for the national team.
“Saurashtra has played the ranji trophy finals this year, and surprisingly still no player even after performing at all platforms, dont get picked for the A series. Our state has had some very good performances over the last few years but have not got the deserved credit. Players surely deserve to know why, and where we lack. Selectors need to be transparent,” he pointed out on Twitter.
Although he’s 34-years-old, Sheldon believes age is not a barrier for the selection process and he’ll keep trying till he makes it. Not many people know about this wicket-keeper batsman from Bhavnagar.
On that note, we take a look at 5 unknown facts about Sheldon Jackson:
1) He was adopted by his uncle at age 4
Sheldon was part of a family that was going through a financial crisis. As a result, at age 4, his uncle Lester Bell adopted him. Bell along with his wife Jennifer and Sheldon’s mother Sederene, supported and encouraged little Sheldon to pursue a cricketing career.
They helped him to buy cricket kits and sent him to the right places to learn the game. Sheldon’s guardians were brave enough to let him follow sports at such a young age. From them, he got all the required support, encouragement, and care to excel in the cricketing world.
2) He was denied work leave in order to play First Division League
Sheldon Jackson was a regular in the TNCA first division league in Chennai. However, due to a lack of support from his employers at the income tax department, he had to step down to the TNCA second-division league.
“I didn’t get support from my department on the leave front. As first division is a three-day format, I decided to opt out. I signed up for Aruna CC as I had to register for TNPL as well. I will be playing second division this season as the matches will be played either on Saturdays or Sundays. Then I can fly down, play the match and leave the same day back home,” said Jackson, who is a tax assistant at the Income Tax.
3) His first stint in the IPL was for RCB
RCB is sometimes known as a team that’s not good with the management of its players. Promising players are often left on the bench while they back a player who doesn’t fit in with their team. Sheldon Jackson was picked up by RCB in February 2013.
However, he didn’t get a single opportunity to play in the league. RCB’s middle order was packed with star batsmen and hence, Jackson could never make the playing XI. Eventually, he was released by RCB and he is now part of the Kolkata Knight Riders for the IPL 2021.
4) He moved to Puducherry from Saurashtra for the 2021 Ranji Season
Jackson is multidimensional: Apart from being a reliable batsman and an excellent fielder, he also kept wickets for Saurashtra in the limited-overs competitions. However, the 34-year-old moved to Puducherry in July 2020 after stating he wanted to move on and ply his trade for another state in the country.
Jackson said, “This has been one of the hardest decisions that I had to make and it’s not been easy for me but I feel it’s the right time for me to move on and play as a professional in some other team or state. All my life I will treasure playing for Saurashtra and I’m proud to be associated with Saurashtra Cricket.
5) He was on a road trip when he got his maiden Saurashtra call-up
Sheldon is a man of determination with a gentle heart and a focused mind. One of his hobbies is traveling. He loves exploring different parts of the world. On one such road trip with his friend, he got a call informing him that he had made it to the Saurashtra One-Day squad.
Sheldon, who was just 18 at the time, was asked to report to the team immediately once he came back from the road trip. Upon hearing the news, he was overjoyed and thanked God first and then his mother and his guardians for making this happen. Sheldon never looked back after that.
Ever since he has been grateful to the Saurashtra Cricket Association.
“It is indeed hard to say who found out my talent and nurtured it. The only name that comes to my mind is Saurashtra Cricket Association and its talented coaches. In early days, I can say that I was in good hands. What I learnt from coaches of Saurashtra Cricket Association helped me immensely,” he said.