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Ankit Rajput, who sent Ricky Ponting to the pavilion in his very first IPL match, can emerge as the new star of this tournament. He is the first player from Kanpur to play in the IPL, who has got a chance to show his talent in a match. This medium pacer of UP Ranji team is playing for Chennai Super Kings under Dhoni’s captaincy. In the match, when he took the wicket of Mumbai Indians, his fans and family members in the city were in awe of happiness. Just before leaving to play for the tournament, Ankit told his story in an interview to inextlive.com.
Ankit considers the movement and swing in his balls as his strength. According to him, I have worked hard to get movement and swing in the nets. His swing was also seen in the match against Mumbai.
Ankit gives credit for his success to his coaches Shashikant Khandekar, Sarvesh Mehrotra and Venkatesh Prasad. According to him, I started playing cricket very late, but seeing my height and physique, Shashi sir and Sarvesh sir encouraged me to bowl fast. He worked very hard with me during my training at Kamala Club. After being selected in the UP team, Venkatesh sir and Zaidi sir also gave a lot of tips. All of these have played an important role in my success.
Ankit considers the experience of sharing the dressing room with legends like Dhoni, Raina and Mike Hussey as a dream come true. According to him, Chennai is the most successful team of IPL and it is a big thing for me to be a part of it. Not everyone gets this opportunity and it is a matter of pride for me. As far as Dhoni is concerned, I consider him a great captain. He does not lose his coolness even in times of tension, this is his most important thing. I am looking forward to playing under his inspirational guidance.
Agarkar is inspiration
Ankit considers Ajit Agarkar as his idol. According to him, I have grown up watching Ajit Agarkar play. He is an example of hard working bowlers and I try to play for Team India like him for a long time. Although Ankit has also played with Bhuvneshwar Kumar, but in his eyes, Praveen Kumar has helped him more. According to him, the control that Praveen Bhai has over the swing is unmatched. I enjoy swinging the ball just like him.
Got the world in just one season
Ankit got a chance to play Ranji Trophy in the last season and he impressed the selectors of UP with his bowling so much that apart from Ranji Trophy, he was also selected for UP team in Deodhar Trophy and Syed Mushtaq T20 Trophy. After this, IPL franchise Chennai Super Kings included him and UP’s pacer Imtiaz Ahmed in the team.
Hardly any cricketer got this exposure in his debut season. In this one season, he took 31 wickets in 7 first class matches. It also includes a charismatic performance of 6 for 68 against Haryana in Lucknow. He took ten wickets in his Ranji Trophy quarter-final against Services, but his team was knocked out of the tournament.
Ankit is a disciplined cricketer. Despite the late start of cricket, he has achieved his position with tremendous willpower. Quick bowling is his specialty and I am sure that one day he will definitely make a place in the Indian team.