Kruthik Krishna to play for U-19 India ‘B’ team in Challenger Trophy
By S.N. Venkatnag Sobers
They all were part of the World Cup-winning Indian side, but the other thing which is common between Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Suresh Raina, Harbhajan Singh and Munaf Patel is that they all come from modest backgrounds and from smaller towns of the country.
These bunch of cricketers played the game in nondescript playgrounds, honed skills under their coaches, but burst into the international scene like gladiators with such aplomb that the world was left speechless. Despite the challenges they faced and the lack of support, victory was theirs for these hard-working sportspersons.
On the road to become another international cricketer from small town is Kruthik Krishna from the rural background of Mandya who has been named in the India U-19 ‘B’ Team. This is a moment of joy for both Kruthik Krishna and the Sugar Town to rejoice.
Kruthik Krishna, a wicket-keeper/batsman, has not only made his town proud but the State as well. In fact, he has joined the elite group of cricketers from Mandya to have played the game in the highest level. Earlier, medium pacers H.S. Sharath represented Karnataka in the Ranji Trophy and M.G. Naveen played for the State in Syed Mustaq Ali T20 tournament.
Having started to play cricket at the time when he was in 3rd std., Kruthik has grown to become one of the top wicket keepers at the junior level in India. He started his cricketing journey from PET Cricket Academy in Mandya under the guidance of coach M. Mahadev. Later, he shifted to Mysuru for better opportunities and is representing RBNCC in Division I, Zonal Cricket League.
Speaking to Star of Mysore, M. Mahadev, Kruthik’s coach, who was overjoyed with the news, said that he was very happy for the youngster to have been named in the India ‘B’ team. “I really wish Kruthik plays for both U-19 and the Indian Men’s teams in the future.”
Kruthik is currently studying II PUC (Commerce) in PES College in Mandya. He has represented Karnataka in almost all levels at the junior level including U-14, U-16 and U-19 level. He was one among 10 budding wicket-keepers in the country to take part in the specialist camp organised by Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) at Bengaluru last year. The camp was conducted by former Indian wicket-keepers Kiran More and Ajay Ratra.
“I am very happy to have been selected to play in U-19 Challenger Trophy. It is a great opportunity to display my skills and also learn from experienced cricketers and coaches. It is a dream for a person like me from Mandya to reach this level,” said Kruthik Krishna.
He also thanked his coaches both at the local and State level for their constant support and added that he would continue to strive hard to play in the next level.
Kruthik’s father G.S. Krishna Shetty owns a business in Mandya and M.R. Krupa, his mother, works as a pharmacist with Employee’s State Insurance (ESI).
He not only thanked his parents for encouraging him to take up the sport but also shared the credit with his grandfather, Raghunandan, who brought him to PET Grounds for practise sessions everyday during the initial years.
All his well-wishers including his coaches and friends have wished Kruthik to give his best in the tournament starting from tomorrow in Hyderabad and come out with flying colours.