Edhen Apple Tom lived a dream on Thursday. He had visualised that he would take a wicket with his first ball on Ranji Trophy debut. He did that when he came on to bowl the 14th over for Kerala against Mizoram on the opening morning at the Saurashtra Cricket Association Ground (C).

He had opener Kishan Lyngdoh caught at slip. He didn’t realise that he had just become the first Kerala bowler ever to achieve the feat of claiming a wicket with the first ball in First Class cricket. Remarkably, he did it at the age of 17. And he went on to take three more wickets to finish with figures of four for 41 from nine overs.

Pleasantly surprised

“I didn’t know that I would be making my Ranji Trophy debut till the morning of the match,” Edhen told  Sportstar . “I was very happy when I was included in the squad, after doing well in the Cooch Behar Under-19 tournament at Vadodara, where I was Kerala’s leading wicket-taker. But I didn’t imagine I would also be playing for the senior Kerala team this season itself.”

He was picked in the team because coach Tinu Yohannan, himself a pacer, saw huge potential in him. “I was impressed when I first saw him at a camp,” he said. “He could surprise the batsmen, especially with his pace.”

Edhen’s coach Sony Cheruvathur believes the future is bright for him.

“He already has a good in-swinger, he is passionate and is a fast learner,” he said. “I could sense there was something special about him when he came to my academy in Dubai.”

Edhen moved to Kerala three years ago, for the sake of his career. It has turned out to be a wise decision taken by his parents.