India’s T20 squad for the upcoming three-match series against Sri Lanka features a new face – all-rounder Washington Sundar. Washington plays for Tamil Nadu and is a free-stroking left-handed batsman who can be flexible with his batting slots. He is also good at the art of conventional offspin and has been consistent throughout. He has been used at the top of the order as a hitter during the Tamil Nadu Premier League. The 18-year-old was included in the Indian Premier League (IPL-10) earlier this year, replacing injured Ravichandran Ashwin in the Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS), and played a big role in Rising Pune Supergiant’s run to the IPL final earlier this year.
Sundar feels it would be a special moment for him to play alongside MS Dhoni. He recalls the guidance he received from MS Dhoni in the Pune side. “I could walk up to him for his advice even during his off hours. He would gladly share his thoughts with me, sort out my problems, give me valuable suggestions. Behind the stumps, he would always encourage me. I am so happy I am joining the Indian squad when he is in the team.”
Sundar credits his father M. Sundar, an all-rounder in his time, and formative coaches for shaping his cricketing career. Sundar comes from a very humble family and got his name ‘Washington’ from an ex-army man called P.D. Washington, who lived nearby. He says Washington was fond of cricket and used to come to watch him play at the Marina ground.
Apart from all these stats and success, there is also one thing that has been revealed: Sundar cannot hear with his one ear. When he was 4-5 years old, he told his parents about this weakness. Though they took him to the doctor, but it was of no use. He kept on playing along with this situation and in way let it become a hurdle.
Sundar is also known for his efficient spin bowling. He had scored 4 consecutive half-centuries in the Tamil Nadu Premier League 2016 and was one of the players who scored the most runs in this tournament.