Aakash Chopra revealed how highly the player was rated by sharing an intriguing story from the CSK star’s early career.
Chennai Super Kings defeated Gujarat Titans in the IPL 2023 final game. Ambati Rayudu’s career as a seasoned batter came to an end with the 16th IPL season.
After the IPL, Rayudu gave up all forms of the game even though his time with Team India had ended a few years prior.
Former Indian batter Aakash Chopra recalled Rayudu’s teenage years and shared some amusing anecdotes from his career, saying he was chosen in the hopes of becoming the “next Sachin Tendulkar”.
“Let me relate a brief anecdote about my first encounter with Ambati Rayudu. India A was on tour in the West Indies in 2003. There, a young child named Ambati Rayudu was chosen. In a video on his YouTube channel”, Chopra remarked that the boy would have been around 16 years old at the time.
“He was chosen with the expectation that he would succeed Sachin Tendulkar because the young man is very gifted. He is comparable to the prodigy because he was a great fielder, batter, and bowler”.
IPL 2023 action featuring Ambati Rayudu for CSK. He consequently experienced a terrible spinner experience
The ex-cricketer who is now a pundit claimed that Rayudu was treated as a prodigy, and the team’s senior players received special instructions on how to care for him.
“Ashok Malhotra was our coach there, and the selectors specifically instructed him to take care of the young player because he is India’s future”.
“Our team lacked any off-spinners. The choice of teams was incredibly intriguing. Amit Mishra was a leg-spinner, and Murali Kartik was a left-arm spinner”.
”We had Abhijit Kale, Connor Williams, me, VVS Laxman, and Gautam Gambhir in the batting lineup. Ambati Rayudu thus had the opportunity to play for such a team”, he revealed.
”He was asked to bowl off-spin in between innings, which the unfortunate man was unable to do. The unfortunate man got to bat very low in the order”.
”On his own legs or the legs of the batters, he would pitch the ball occasionally. Other times, he would throw full tosses. Occasionally, he would bowl wicket-taking balls “.
“I recall that the West Indies players used to hit very hard, so whenever Ambati came to bowl, the short-leg and midwicket fielders would get a little nervous”.
”You were therefore terrified because you were in the firing line. He shouldn’t bowl short, I used to be at short leg, so I used to ask”.