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Rediff.com  » Cricket » 'I spend extra hours driving an auto to buy cricket gear for my son'

'I spend extra hours driving an auto to buy cricket gear for my son'

January 05, 2016 19:24 IST

Cricket's youngest run-machine Pranav Dhanawade, his father and coach reflect on the record-breaking feat in conversation with Aruneel Sadadekar/Rediff.com.

 pranav with family

IMAGE: Pranav Dhanawade with his parents at a felicitation ceremony. Photo: Sahil Salvi

Prashant Dhanawade was lost for words when asked about his son Pranav’s record-breaking cricketing feat.

The 15-year-old became the first batsman to aggregate more than 1,000 runs in an innings in any format of the game when he scored 1009 runs for Smt. KC Gandhi School (Kalyan) against Arya Gurukul School in the HT Bhandari Cup inter-school cricket tournament, organised by the Mumbai Cricket Association.

“I spend extra hours driving an auto-rickshaw to afford cricket gear for my son. But, today, I feel all my hard work has paid off,” declared an ecstatic Prashant, adding he rushed to the ground on Monday, Day 1 of the match, on learning that his son had bettered the record of Prithvi Shaw, who scored 546 runs in the Harris Shield tournament in November 2013.

Prashant added: "Pranav’s idol is Sachin Tendulkar. He is the reason why Pranav took up the game. Sachin's son, Arjun, is a good friend of Pranav. They used to play together in Mumbai.”

With the accolades pouring in, Pranav, on his part, conceded that it was only after he crossed the 800-run-mark, he thought of chasing the 1000-runs milestone.

“I feel elated to achieve the feat of scoring 1000 runs. The record was not on my mind. I played my natural aggressive game and it was only after I reached 800 runs that my coach reminded me of becoming the first batsmen to score 1000 runs,” said Pranav.

Coach Mobin Sheikh, who mentored Pranav since the age of five, feels this can be a new beginning for cricketers from smaller suburbs like Kalyan.

“This record came as a surprise to me. Pranav has always been too aggressive and often throws away his wicket in the 30s and 40s. But this has been the best innings that I have seen at the schools level.

“There are not many facilities in Kalyan. It is very difficult for boys from distant suburbs to make it big in the game. Hopefully, this can be a new beginning,” said Sheikh.

The batsman’s epic knock as an opener may have drawn the attention of one and all, including iconic batsman Sachin Tendulkar, but Pranav wants to carry on in his primary role as wicketkeeper-batsman.

“Being a wicketkeeper-batsman, I like Aussie stumper Brad Haddin. I want to carry on the good work in Mumbai’s age-group tournaments and then move up the ranks to play in the Ranji Trophy, with the main aim of representing India,” the young record-breaking batsman added.

Recognizing the significance of his feat, the Mumbai Cricket Association will felicitate the Kalyan boy on Wednesday, while the Government of Maharashtra has decided to bear the coaching expenses of the state’s new cricket prodigy.

pranav with friends

IMAGE: The son of an auto-rickshaw driver, Pranav Dhanawade finished with an unbeaten individual score of 1009 not out, which came off 323 balls, and included 59 sixes and 129 fours. Photo: Sahil Salvi

Meet the youngest run-machine

  • 15-year-old Pranav Dhanawade is a student of KC Gandhi School, Kalyan.
  • His unbeaten 1009 came off 323 balls and included 129 fours and 59 sixes.
  • His obliterated the 117-year record (628 not out) of Arthur Collins, set in 1899.
  • Pranav’s father is an autorickshaw driver
  • Both father and son are ardent fans of Sachin Tendulkar