A dream come true for Mithun

A dream come true for Mithun

Paceman becomes only the 17th player from Karnataka to play for India

A dream come true for Mithun

Abhimanyu Mithun

On a blistering Saturday, the 20-year-old from Bangalore earned his maiden international cap in the final one-dayer against South Africa, the icing on the cake in his first season in competitive cricket.

The paceman didn’t exactly set the stage afire, finishing with figures of 8-0-63-0 including 19 in his last over on an absolute shirtfront, but he showed great composure and poise, and never looked like he didn’t belong at this level.

He did learn the hard way, too, that international cricket isn’t anywhere near as forgiving as domestic cricket, a lesson that should stand him in good stead in the future.
Brought on in the eighth over as first-change with South Africa on 44 without loss, the man sporting the number 16 shirt began with a short, wide delivery that went under Hashim Amla’s bat, then sent down three more dot balls before the batsman hit back with back-to-back boundaries.

It was quite the tale of the day as he struggled for sustained accuracy on a belter that offered no margin for error. Mithun’s chance came as the team management rested Ashish Nehra in a match of little serious consequence, given that India had already knotted up the series 2-0.

Mithun, who topped all-comers in the Ranji Trophy with 47 sticks from nine games and finished the first-class season with 52 scalps from ten matches, hasn’t had like success in domestic one-day cricket, but the think-tank and the selectors used the opportunity to see whether he has what it takes to be a long-term prospect.

Mithun, the 180th cricketer to turn out for India in one-day internationals, also became the first Karnataka player since Robin Uthappa in April 2006 (against England in Indore) to make his one-day debut and only the 17th in all from the State to represent the country in 50-over cricket.

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