Unknown Kerala practice bowler becomes IPL hero
Dubai: Prashant Parameswaran, an unknown bowler from a small village in Kerala who had only seen cricket's super stars on television, made a dream debut in the Indian Premier League (IPL) against Delhi Daredevils and walked away with the Man of the Match award on Monday.
Bagging the prize wicket of Delhi's star batsmen and captain Virender Sehwag and prolific scorer Venugopal Rao, this 25-year-old left-arm pacer played a pivotal role in Kochi's win. His rise to fame has been remarkable as he never thought he would be part of the Kochi Tuskers team.
Speaking to Gulf News, S. Ramesh, Director of the Kerala Cricket Academy in Thiruvananthapuram, said: "Parameswaran will rank among the best pacers in South India. He is very promising and will go a long way."
Born in Thannermukkom, a village in Alapuzzha district, the tall Parameswaran had come to Kochi Tuskers training camp as a net practice bowler.
Kochi coach Geoff Lawson wanted a left-arm pacer to bowl at his batsmen and was impressed by Parameswaran's bowling.
After a few bowling sessions, Lawson asked Kochi owners to sign him up as the fourth Kerala player after S. Sreesanth, Raiphi Gomez and P. Prasanth.
However, Parameswaran never thought he would get to play alongside international cricketers.
Lawson, after one look at the green Kotla wicket, decided to play Parameswaran. Kochi captain Mahela Jayawardene — who according to Ramesh was also very impressed with Parameswaran — asked him to bowl the third over of the match. He had to bowl to Sehwag, known as the destroyer of all great pacers.
Sehwag hit the first ball from Parameswaran over long off out of the Kotla ground for a huge six.
However, on the next ball he made Sehwag defend.
Parameswaran produced a beauty with the third ball to have Sehwag, going for a cut, edge him to wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel.
After a replay was done to find if it was a no ball, Sehwag was declared out.
Delhi found it hard to score against Parameswaran, who also picked Rao's vital wicket and returned with figures of 2 for 29 from his four overs.
After the match, Sehwag remarked: "I heard the name of Parameswaran and asked my colleagues about him. They told me he is Kochi's new bowler. He really recovered well from the six I hit and took my wicket. He is a good find for Kochi and India too."
Will the athletic Parameswaran become the next pacer from Kerala which is known to produce world-class athletes?