The coach of the team against whom Hanuma Vihari displayed valor by playing with a fractured wrist has become one of his new supporters as a result of his on-field bravery in a Ranji Trophy match during the past few days.
The coach of the Madhya Pradesh team, Chandrakant Pandit, praised Vihari's tenacity and remarked, "That is a remarkable demonstration of courage and dedication." The reigning champions came from behind to defeat the Andhra team in the quarterfinals in Indore, but Vihari, the captain of the defeated Andhra squad, was the game's star—or rather, the sad match hero. Vihar, a right-handed batsman, batted left-handed while wearing a cast on his left hand.
"Hats off to Hanuma for performing such heroic deeds on your behalf and meeting the demands of the team's circumstance. He serves as an example for young people in our nation "After the game on Friday, Pandit (61), a veteran of the Indian domestic circuit, spoke with Cricbuzz (February 3).
Vihari (29), who was similarly brave for India during a Test in Sydney despite suffering from a hamstring injury, received personal congratulations from Pandit. India went on to win the series. "I said "hats off to you" and complimented him on his courageous action without holding back. Now, I genuinely respect him "stated Pandit.
In the first innings, Vihari, who bats at No. 3, was hit on his left wrist when on 16. Scan results revealed a fracture after he departed the field. He would need to be out for more than a month. However, Vihari displayed great bravery when he entered the game at No. 11 and added 26 runs for the 10th wicket, raising his own score to 27 in the first innings. He batted again at No. 11 in the second game and added 15 runs to the team's total by scoring. The effort, however, proved insufficient for Andhra, who lost the game after gaining a sizable lead in the first inning.
"What I think is irrelevant; but, I want to share with you what I told my players in the Madhya Pradesh locker room. I've asked them to give the man a standing ovation. He has demonstrated unmatched dedication to the cause in this way. Everyone should study and practice the dedication he has shown "Pandit said with awe.
In his time as a player and coach, Pandit witnessed a number of such courageous acts, including those of Sunil Gavaskar and Dilip Vengsarkar, but he said the Vihari effort stood out to him. "I told my boys that Gaurav Yadav bowled while suffering from a sore knee" (in the same match). When Gaurav had a head injury during the Ranji Trophy final last year, he performed a similar stunt. In a Ranji match against Karnataka, Sunil Gavaskar batted left-handed for the Mumbai team on a dreadful turner.
"I also remember Dilip Vengsarkar playing while his chest was hurt. Despite having numerous bruises on his chest, he continued to participate in a Ranji match. I once competed against Rajasthan while having a broken finger. Physiotherapists were not always available to us back then. While watching Malcolm Marshall play against England with a hurt hand, I was reminded of Anil Kumble doing the same thing while playing against the West Indies while wearing a bandage on his jaw "Pandit remembered.
Added he, "The Hanuma show, however, stands out for me amid all the other instances I have cited. Imagine him facing Avesh Khan's speed while batting left-handed with one hand shattered. He was willing to take a chance on his second hand getting hurt again, but he put the team's needs ahead of his own. Outstanding."
The MP coach continued to sing its praises. "What a dedication that was! He stepped out to face our bowlers despite being unable to wield his bat due to a shattered hand. The addition of those 15–16 runs in each inning demonstrates a high level of tenacity and a never-give-up attitude. In my career, I haven't witnessed many examples of such bravery. That was the pinnacle."
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