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I played with Tendulkar’s bat in that innings: Vidyut Sivaramakrishnan, first No. 11 batter to get a ton in Ranji Trophy

Vidyut Sivaramakrishnan.
| Photo Credit: FILE PHOTO: S.S. KUMAR

The first-ever player to get to a century at No. 11 in the Ranji Trophy, former Tamil Nadu opener Vidyut Sivaramakrishnan, recalled his innings on Tuesday. He scored a 122-ball 115 (17×4, 3×6) in the pre-quarterfinal versus Delhi at the IIT-Chemplast ground here in 2001. Mumbai’s Tushar Deshpande became the second No. 11 batter to score a ton in the tournament with his knock of 123 against Baroda on Tuesday.

“This is something which doesn’t happen (at all). Mine happened out of chance only. Because, I still remember, I wasn’t supposed to play that game. I think Ashish Kapoor at 9.15 a.m. (on matchday) came and told me that I was playing. I heard it as ‘You’re not playing.’

“So, till 11 a.m. or 12 p.m. on the first day, I thought I wasn’t playing! Then, suddenly (captain) Robin (Singh) came and asked who should bat at No. 10 and 11 between M.R. Shrinivas and me. That’s actually when I knew I was playing.

“Some senior player said that M.R. is a more compact player and that I would just throw the bat. So, I was sent in at No. 11. Otherwise, maybe if I had gone at No. 10, it wouldn’t have been the same,” he said.

After the innings, he was in for a pleasant surprise that made the knock even more special for him. “I got the century with Sachin Tendulkar’s bat! (Sadagopan) Ramesh was playing for India at that time. His brother (Sadagopan) Mahesh had brought that bat for that match. After I scored the hundred, he told me, ‘This is a very special bat, because Sachin gave that bat to Ramesh and you used that bat to score a century!’”

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