Ambati Rayudu. The Scapegoat of Indian Cricketing Politics.

Ambati Rayudu is definitely one player who was expected to make it big. So what went wrong?

Ambati Rayudu
Ambati Rayudu was in the form of his life in the year 2018. He helped India win the Asia Cup as well.

Remember Ambati Rayudu… Yes, yes, the guy who ordered 3-D glasses for viewing the 2019 World Cup. Here’s a little story on why I feel he was dropped even after performing so well in the games preceding the world cup. It is a very lesser-known fact that right from a young age Ambati was a prodigy. He was cited to be the Hyderabadi Tendulkar. 

Ambati Rayudu and his hilarious tweet was the talk of the town before the 2019 World Cup.

Ambati Rayudu Early Career: –

So, what went wrong? As a prodigy, he was given several opportunities. He was the one who was preferred over other kids because the system intended to promote him considering his ability. He captained the U-19 side in the year 2004. India ended as semi-finalists and Ambati had a decent world cup. His batchmates included DK, Shikhar, Robbie, and even the pop sensation Hardy Sandhu. I feel you might just figure out his sheer ability by the fact that he was preferred over such class players. After this major event, Ambati Rayudu was doing decently well in the domestic circuit. 

He was short-tempered from the initial stage of his career itself and it was very well known in the domestic circuit. 2007 is the year where I feel that things started going downhill for him. The year 2007 had bought in an ocean of opportunities. With the emergence of the idea of the IPL and also ZEE Productions getting in their own league ‘ICL’ domestic players got exposed to the money market. As the ICL was playing bigger bucks to domestic players Ambati opted for ICL.

Back then BCCI had a clause that if any player plays any other private tournament, he or she has to get terminated from their contract with the central body. Ambati hailed from a lower-middle-class background and in the attempt to support his family financially he got rid of the central contract. Here is where the tables turned for him. Mark my words, a player who was supported by the BCCI throughout his short career turned his back towards them when it was expected that players of his stature will opt to play the IPL and give it a bigger brand value. 

Ambati Rayudu Professional Career: –

The ICL was a miserable private T20 League that did not connect with the fans at all.

Eventually, due to the cutthroat market competition, the ICL failed miserably and turned out to be a financial disaster. Again, Ambati in the year 2010 bagged back his BCCI contract and represented the MUMBAI INDIANS. A swashbuckling middle-order batsman who gave consistent performances that’s exactly what this franchise got. He turned out to be an asset to the team. During his stint at Mumbai 2010–2017, Mumbai won the IPL 3 times. One can never forget his 10 balls 30 against Rajasthan Royals to get Mumbai through to the knockouts in the year 2014. He made his India ODI debut in 2013 against Zimbabwe. But it’s quite evident that he was already very late. For a player slated to be the Tendulkar of the south, a debut at the age of 28 sounds meaningless. 

Then comes the year 2018. A career-defining year for him. Ambati top scores big in the IPL while playing for the Super Kings in the IPL. Coincidently the National Team is looking for someone to fill the void created by the downfall of Yuvraj Singh. A player who can bat at 4 and bring in 2–3 bowling overs. Ambati was picked. Ambati performed. A hundred against the Windie’s had almost ascertained his flight to the UK for the 2019 world cup. Before that, a name was heard. “Vijay Shankar” the man who would eventually replace Ambati. Vijay was doing well but Ambati too had not done anything wrong. Shankar made his debut in 2019 itself against the KIWIS and scored a 45 in his first game. But in the same game, Ambati scored a fighting 90. 

Ambati Rayudu 2018 IPL Season: –

Next came the series against England. Ambati was not picked because of failure in the Yo-Yo tests. Now I have a question for all the readers……If we are picking players with world-class fitness already, why should we have a fitness trainer and a nutritionist associated with the team then? Also, if fitness was a question in the game players like Sehwag, Inzamam would have never made it big. But somehow, he did clear the test on the second attempt. While announcing the World Cup squad he was not picked. The reason given was that Vijay provides a 3-D approach. So why was Hardik Pandya picked?

I mean then in a squad of 15 there will be two players with similar attributes, right? But it’s always easier said than done as the selectors have to face the scrutiny. But I possibly see the past of Ambati as a major reason for him not being picked. You didn’t support the system when it was required and now the system won’t support you either……..