Aggression often results in being bashful in cricket. It is a quality players strictly guard themselves against. To Samarth R, it comes naturally.
Story first published on: Tuesday, 19 February 2013 05:02 IST
This level-headed, responsible batsman who will play the University Cricket Championship for Jain University has the rather rare ability to switch gears at will and play as per the needs of his team. It therefore is hardly surprising that he has several match-winning knocks to his credit and almost single-handedly took his team to the Inter-University Cricket title.
"After scoring a lot of runs for my team, I know there is a lot of attention on me. I am learning to deal with it," says the Man of the Series of the Inter-University Cricket Championship.
The attention though is not for no reason. From his parents, to coach and even former India player Syed Kirmani, praises have come in rich hauls.
"I think he can play for India. For any coach or captain, he will be the perfect player. He will be the main weapon," says his coach - Nidhuvan - who added that against Bombay, Samarth scored the first 70 runs with just three three-four boundaries but hit the next 60-odd runs were scored off 30 balls. This was his unbeaten ton (123* off 151) which took his team to the Rohinton Baria title.
The manner in which Samarth took on Bombay's skilled bowlers did not surprise many who know him. "We have tried to do the best for him. Even my wife has been important in his (Samarth's) life. We are really blessed to have a child like him and wish he plays for India," says father D. R Ravi Kumar.
Having led Karnataka Under-19 team apart from playing for his university, Samarth has the potential to go the entire distance towards the national team's dressing room. It may not be an ardent task with a legendary player as his inspiration.
"Seeing Sachin Tendulkar score runs even at his age, after he has achieved so much, just inspires me a lot," says Samarth. When reminded that he shares his idol with the entire country, pat came the reply: What can you say, he is not called the god for no reason!
If his current form - with 14000 runs in all forms of cricket - is anything to go by, India may well get another sporting god in the years to come. After all, Samarth also claimed three wickets against Bombay to prove the halo over his cricketing career does not depend on just his ability to wield the bat.