It is not often that we see an Indian young bowler bowling at speeds close to 150 KMPH but 18-year-old Kamlesh Nagarkoti did just that when he ran up to bowl against the Australian team in the ongoing ICC U19 World Cup. His performance over the fortnight has taken the cricket world by storm, as he delivered balls with blinding pace and rattling accuracy.
However, for those who are yet to see this teenage sensation, the wait won’t be much longer as the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) snapped him up at the recently concluded IPL 2018 auction for a whopping INR 3.6 crore.
Here we look at the 10 interesting facts that you didn’t know about the U19 sensation and Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) IPL 2018 signing Kamlesh Nagarkoti:
1. At 17 years of age, Kamlesh Nagarkoti made his List-A debut
Kamlesh Nagarkoti made his List-A debut early last year against Mumbai aged just 17. Prior to his debut, he had impressed hugely while representing the Rajasthan U16 and U19 team.
2. He took a hat-trick in his second appearance in Vijay Hazare Trophy
Just his second List A match in the Vijay Hazare Trophy where he made his debut, Nagarkoti picked up a hat-trick against Gujarat as he helped his side to an unlikely victory. His 3rd wicket in that hat-trick was Jasprit Bumrah for 0.
3. Kamlesh Nagarkoti is an excellent bowler, but no less with the bat too
Although Kamlesh Nagarkoti is a specialist bowler, he is no muck with the bat as well. In his List-A career, he has scored 116 runs in just 5 innings, including the best score of 56. He averages 38.66 with the bat, while taking 9 wickets in that same duration.
4. He was not a fan of playing cricket in his childhood
He was never very interested in taking up cricket as a profession, however, it was his brother who took notice of his talent and enrolled him at the Sanskar Cricket Academy. The rest, as they say, is history.
5. Took 7 wickets in a youth series against England, helping India to bag a series-win
After impressing in the domestic circuit, Nagarkoti was called up to represent India in a youth series against England in England. He played 3 matches and picked up 7 wickets, including 4 in the decider which helped his team to secure the series win.
6. Watching him play in the U19 World Cup, Cricket legends called out his goodwill on Twitter
Nagarkoti’s impressive performance in the ongoing U19 World Cup hasn’t gone unnoticed. His performance in India’s opening match against Australia was watched by legends of the game like Sunil Gavaskar and Virender Sehwag. Having seen him bowl, they were quick to sound out the Indian cricket board about the youngster’s talent via twitter.
7. Kamlesh Nagarkoti took 14 wickets in 2 cricket matches against England
Nagarkoti also played in the two-match Youth Test series away to England last year, where he ended up as the leading wicket-taker with 14 wickets to his name at an average of 15.14.
8. He was included in the U23 Indian team for a Bangladesh tour
Indian U19 coach Rahul Dravid has always been a big admirer of Kamlesh Nagarkoti’s pace and talent. So much so that the former Indian captain included him in the emerging under-23 team that travelled to Bangladesh.
9. He was inspired by Pakistan bowling great Waqar Younis
Nagarkoti was inspired by Pakistani bowling great Waqar Younis, whom he still considers the best ever. In the current senior Indian team, his favourite players are Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami and Rohit Sharma.
10. Kamlesh Nagarkoti has high chances to be the next Team India leading pacer
Kamlesh Nagarkoti was born on 28th December 1999, is still only 18 years old, which means that his best years are yet to come. If he can manage to stay fit and take proper training, there is no doubt that he will one day lead the senior Indian bowling attack.