Watch out for Siddarth Kaul, Kohli's U-19 team-mate

Kaul was a part of the India U-19 team that won the World Cup in 2008 under Virat Kohli. While his then captain has emerged as one of the most talked about leaders of the world, he is just about to begin his journey for Team India.

Featuring for the Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League (IPL) this year, Kaul picked up 16 wickets from 10 matches.   -  K.R. DEEPAK

 

Siddarth Kaul was gearing up for a new spell against Services in a Ranji Trophy encounter in Amritsar on Monday afternoon, when the field umpire broke the news to him. For a couple of minutes, the young pacer from Punjab stood still at the bowling end.

After all, the fact that he has been chosen in the Indian team for the ODI series against Sri Lanka was yet to sink in. “I got goosebumps. I could not believe that the dream (of playing for India) would finally come true. I was dazed for a few minutes,” an excited Kaul told Sportstar on Monday evening.

Read: Kohli rested for Sri Lanka ODI series

As he spoke, his Punjab team-mates were waiting for him. They were all heading to the local temple. “This has all happened because of the almighty. I can’t think him enough,” Kaul said.

This has been a season to remember for the 27-year-old. Featuring for the Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League (IPL), he picked up 16 wickets from 10 matches.

After that, he was part of the India A side that toured South Africa. He proved to be consistent in the foreign conditions too, and after returning home, he scalped six wickets against New Zealand A last month. “I don’t want to do anything new now. I will stick to the tried and tested formula,” he said.

While Kaul wants to maintain proper line and length, he understands that there will be pressure. “I will continue doing what I did throughout the season. The aim is to be perfect,” he pointed out.

If he manages a berth in the playing eleven in the first two games, it will be even more special, because India will be playing the first ODI in Dharamsala, followed by the one in Mohali. “Playing at home (Mohali) will be a good thing and it will help me since I am used to the conditions,” Kaul said.

In the beginning of the year, Kaul had consulted noted mental expert Dr. Amit Bhattacharjee — who is considered the mental coach of Olympic gold medallist Abhinav Bindra — and Kaul feels that has helped him immensely. “Whenever I needed help, he has always been there as a guru. It is really a good thing,” Kaul said.

Interestingly, Kaul was a part of the India U-19 team that won the World Cup in 2008 under the leadership of a certain Virat Kohli. It has been a decade, almost. While his then captain has emerged as one of the most talked about leaders of the world, Kaul is just about to begin his journey.

It may be delayed, but dreams do come true.