Devdutt Padikkal, RCB opener made quite an impact in IPL 2020. The 20-year-old who plays for Karnataka in domestic cricket signed off IPL 2020 as RCB’s highest run-getter and 8th highest run-getter with 473 runs in 15 IPL matches at an average of 31.53 in his debut season.
He was in a rich vein of form in the last domestic tournaments as well. He scored 218 runs at an average of 43.60 in six matches for Karnataka in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy and continued with his sublime touch in the Vijay Hazare Trophy as well.
Devdutt Padikkal Set Game Plans To Build An Innings And Matured With Time
The left-hander amassed 737 runs in 7 matches at an astonishing average of 147.40. His onslaught in the Vijay Hazare Trophy included four back-to-back centuries. He tested positive for COVID-19 on March 22 and is currently under home quarantine in Bengaluru and will only join the RCB bio bubble in Chennai once “his RT-PCR tests are negative”, according to a statement released by RCB.
He is likely to miss his team’s opener against Mumbai Indians on April 9 at Chennai and may miss the second match of the tournament too on April 14 against Sunrisers Hyderabad at the same venue. With Virat Kohli announcing he will open for RCB this season, Devdutt Padikkal is the other first-choice opener for the team.
Ahead of the 2021 season, Timesofindia.com caught up with the very talented 20-year-old left-handed batsman for an exclusive interview, before he tested positive, mostly to talk about his impressive domestic season, playing alongside Virat Kohli, meeting batting legend Rahul Dravid and cricketing role models.
“I have matured with time and the way I have been batting. I really learned a lot in terms of building an innings and getting those big runs because I used to have problems with getting out a number of times in the 70s and 80s. In the last couple of years, I have really worked a lot on my batting to build an innings and to have a clear set of plans,”Devdutt Padikkal on dominating the domestic season and hitting back-to-back centuries.
“I had an incredible outing at RCB last year. Playing alongside Virat bhai and ABD and all other cricketers was great. It was an incredible experience. Every day I was learning something new from Virat and ABD. The way they carry themselves in the international tournaments and in IPL, which is a long tournament, is amazing,” Devdutt Padikkal on experience to play alongside players like Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers in RCB.
“The passion and hunger he has for the game, it’s incredible. He has that kind of drive towards the game. He doesn’t need anyone to push or motivate. He has so much fire to perform and give the best for the country or team. That is something I really want to have in myself,”Devdutt Padikkal on biggest thing learnt from Virat Kohli.
“The side is looking strong. We have star players. I had a huge learning (curve) last season and will aim to carry on the same show in the IPL too. Looking forward to scoring a good amount of runs for RCB and helping the team win the title,” Devdutt Padikkal on RCB’s chances this season.
“The ultimate goal for any cricketer is to play for the country. I also want to represent my country.I am trying to improve my game every day and take it to the next level so that whenever the opportunity arises, I can grab it with both hands,” Devdutt Padikkal on chances of playing for India some day.
RCB has retained just 12 squad members and released 10 players before IPL 2021 Auction. RCB released Moeen Ali, Shivam Dube, Gurkeerat Singh Mann, Aaron Finch, Chris Morris, Pavan Negi, Parthiv Patel (retired), Dale Steyn (unavailable), Isuru Udana, Umesh Yadav from their IPL 2020 squad before IPL 2021.
Devdutt Padikkal Opens Up On Rahul Dravid And Gautam Gambhir
RCB has acquired the services of in-form Mohammed Azharudeen, Rajat Patidar, Daniel Sams, Sachin Baby, Daniel Christian, and Srikar Bharat.
Royal Challengers Bangalore splurged a whopping INR 29.25 crore on two overseas all-rounders in Glenn Maxwell and Kyle Jamieson during the IPL 2021 auction held in Chennai. Despite spending a maximum of INR 84.65 crore, Royal Challengers have the least number of players (22). Later, Finn Allen replaced Josh Phillipe who opted out.
“I have spoken with Rahul (Dravid) sir a few times. Whenever I have the chance, I have met him. I met him at the KCA most of the time. He is such a humble person. He is ready to give any kind of advice whenever I need it,” on learning from Rahul Dravid.
“I started playing cricket when I was nine years old. It started off as a hobby and then my parents took me to a summer camp. I never thought I would take up cricket as a profession. But once I shifted to Bangalore for cricket, because Bangalore had a really good infrastructure for cricket and spent more time at the crease, I realised this is something I should do professionally. My parents supported me a lot,” on cricketing journey.
“For me, there is not one individual who has inspired me. Every person has a separate story and everyone really has gone through with some things to get there in their career. I take inspiration from every cricketer who has played for India because getting there is not easy at all. It takes a lot to get there. They have done a lot to reach that level and contributed to the country,” said he on inspiration.
“But my role model is Gautam Gambhir in cricket.”
RCB Probable Playing XI In Absence Of Devdutt Padikkal For MI: Virat Kohli(c), Finn Allen (wk), AB De Villiers, Glenn Maxwell, Mohammed Azharuddeen, Washington Sundar, Kyle Jamieson, Mohammed Siraj, Shahbaz Ahmed, Navdeep Saini, Yuzvendra Chahal.