Hyderabad: From being the son of a league cricketer to enjoying the privilege of sharing the dressing room with leading lights from contemporary times, Kane Williamson, David Warner, Jonny Bairstow and Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Hyderabad’s very own 27-year-old batsman Sandeep Bavanaka could not have asked for a more sweeter icing on the cake to his blossoming career.
When Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) picked the southpaw for his base price of Rs 20 lakh at the IPL -2020 players’ auction held in Kolkata on Thursday, many eyebrows were raised because, in a way, he was an unknown commodity.
A resident of Ramnagar in the city, his cricketing aspirations began when as a four-year-old his cricketer-father, and later day umpire Parameshwar gifted him a bat. A natural right-hander, he changed his batting style to left, which, though surprising at that time, today seems to be a right decision taken at the right time.
A century on Ranji debut against Jharkhand in 2010 propelled his career and there has been no looking back for Sandeep. In 53 matches since that memorable debut, he has accumulated 3,448 runs for an average of 48.5 with a double century, seven centuries, and 21 half-centuries.
His recent outing in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy has been equally prolific. He also enhanced his reputation as a very good striker of the ball. He scored 261 runs in seven matches. That he can be aggressive and can take the bowlers by the scruff of their neck is demonstrated by the 15 sixes he slammed, the second highest in the tournament.
There is no denying that Hyderabad fans will keep a close watch on their newest IPL face. How he responds to the call of destiny remains to be seen.