IPL 2022: How Delhi’s apathy nearly ruined Ayush Badoni’s career | Cricket News

World wakes up to LSG batter who impressed Dravid but was ignored by own state team
NEW DELHI: As Ayush Badoni asserted his presence at the crease and resurrected Lucknow Super Giants‘ innings by scoring a 41-ball 54 against Gujarat Titans on his IPL debut, the Delhi cricket fraternity sunk in embarrassment.
The 22-year-old Badoni has been touted as the next big batting talent from Delhi, after Rishabh Pant, for a long time now. He has decimated bowling attacks in junior cricket since he was 14, made it to India’s U-19 team in 2018, played match-winning knocks in the U-19 Asia Cup and then disappeared. He wasn’t eligible to play the U-19 World Cup in February 2020. Here’s the interesting bit. Then India U-19 coaches Rahul Dravid and WV Raman had sent messages to Delhi selectors to blood this diminutive middle-order batter straight into the senior state team.
Then Delhi selectors and coach ignored DDCA Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) chairman Atul Wassan, who was told by Dravid to take care of Badoni. The selectors changed but the chances didn’t come. Badoni was eventually picked for the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 tournament in Jan 2021 but got to bat only once in five games, that too at No. 7. He didn’t make any of the Delhi teams this season.
Ask around and everybody will now pass the blame or casually make comments about ‘poor attitude’. All this happened when Delhi failed to progress beyond the first round of every tournament they played. Badoni went about smacking bowlers for three years at every trial for IPL franchises. The son of a documentary film-maker, Badoni dedicated his knock to late coach Tarak Sinha.
Sinha and Devendra Sharma have stood by him like a rock since he arrived at Sonnet Club at the age of 10. Things so desperate for Badoni that he started looking for opportunities to play for other first-class sides. An offer from the Railways came his way but he turned it down to give it one more shot in Delhi.
“He is our big hope. Tarak sir had big hopes from him. We believe he is meant for bigger things. I used to meet his father in Shalimar Bagh and he used to be so worried. Even before the auction, he said he was struggling to hit big to balls coming in to him. I got him to bat in open nets and opened his front toe in his stance. He called me after the innings on Monday and said he felt comfortable against the pacy Lockie Ferguson,” Devendra told TOI on Tuesday.
LSG assistant coach Vijay Dahiya had kept an eye out for Badoni for a couple of years. He has been in touch with Badoni for some months and talking to him after watching his videos. The result and faith showed by LSG mentor Gautam Gambhir showed on Monday night.

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