Grit, patience take Vinay to Indian T20 team


Bangalore: For Karnataka paceman R. Vinay Kumar, life has taken a giant leap. From deciding to pursue his career in cricket while his father drove an autorickshaw for a living to being selected for the Indian T20 cricket team, the Davangere boy has come a long way.

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“My parents sacrificed a lot for me,” Vinay has been saying since Friday after the selectors announced in Mumbai the final 15-member squad for the T20 World Cup in the West Indies next month.

Like other cricketers who perform well in the domestic cricket tournament and expect a national call, Vinay had been waiting since his excellent debut in Ranji Trophy in 2004 when he took five wickets including that of former Indian captain Saurav Ganguly.

Feeling disappointed when the call did not come, 26-year-old Vinay says he would ask Anil Kumble and Rahul Dravid whether he was not up to the mark.

“They kept encouraging me saying your time will come, continue the good work,” Vinay told journalists.

Finally, Vinay found a place in the Indian team though for the shortest version of the game.

It was celebration time Friday not just for the family but the whole of Davangere, which was once famous for its cotton mills and was referred to as the Manchester of Karnataka.

Vinay’s performance in the domestic cricket and as part of Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) team in the Indian Premier Leage T20 series earned him the nickname of ‘Davangere Express’.

From Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa and Karnataka State Cricket Association president Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar to RCB and state team mates like Kumble and Dravid have all hailed Vinay’s selection.