What’s the story?
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) skipper Gautam Gambhir has urged Indian team’s selectors to take notice of Robin Uthappa’s impressive performances in the ongoing Twenty20 tournament. In a column titled Captain’s Diary for KKR’s official website, the left-hander lavished praise on the wicket-keeper batsman’s remarkable consistency and supported his earnest attempts at making a national comeback.
After the side’s recently completed clash against Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS), Gambhir wrote, “Uthappa too was brilliant behind and in front of the stumps. Three stumpings and one of them being a game-changer really helped us. And while batting he displayed beautiful hitting technique. What stood for me was his ability to hit the ball straight. I hope selectors are watching.”
“In the end I was satisfied that I also played some part in the win through my batting. To tell you the truth the credit for my innings should also go to Uthappa. I could ease myself in because he was taking risks and smoking them. These are the reasons I love this game – team work and selflessness.”
Upon making his debut against England in 2006, Uthappa has represented India in 46 ODIs and 13 T20Is. His previous appearance came during the 2015 limited-overs tour to Zimbabwe.
The heart of the matter
Uthappa has been in sparkling form during this IPL season. From 9 matches until now (including Friday’s clash against Delhi Daredevils), the right-hander has scored 331 runs at an average of 41.37 and strike-rate of 168.02 including four fifty-plus scores. He is second only to skipper Gambhir in this edition’s list of leading run-scorers thus far.
Earlier, the 31-year old opened up on his dream of making a comeback into the Indian team. The right-hander revealed that he has been striving hard to make an entry into Test cricket and also expressed confidence on his chances of donning the national colors.
Uthappa will be eager to continue his admirable run of form when the Knight Riders take on Sunrisers Hyderabad away from home on Sunday night. With the Champions Trophy looming in the horizon, a slew of eye-catching performances could go a long way in convincing the Indian selectors of his utility.
Needless to say, the selectors will indeed be taking note of the top performers in the ongoing IPL season. If Uthappa can maintain his consistency in the tournament, his dream and Gambhir’s wish can come true.