Bellary Tuskers have yet to take giant strides in the Karbonn Karnataka Premier League powered by Cycle Pure Agarbathies tournament but the 2016 edition could well prove to be their year.
Since their KPL debut in 2014, the team has not played to its potential. Barring a few individual performances, they have not really taken off thus far. But that could change this year as the current squad promises to deliver better results thanks to the presence of a few of the state’s talented cricketers in its ranks. The seniors will provide good balance to the young team.
Overall, the team composition looks very balanced.
In senior players like Amit Verma, KB Pawan, and Balachandra Akhil, the Bellary Tuskers have a seasoned lot. All three have vast experience on the first-class circuit. Verma and Pawan have even represented different states, after making their presence felt in the Karnataka team.
Amit Verma, during a chat, revealed that Tuskers had plenty of options to choose from.
“It’s a balanced side this year. Both batting and bowling departments are well covered. This gives the captain a lot of options,” he said.
Comparing the team to last year’s squad, Verma said that finishing games needed special focus.
“This year our focus is on finishing games. Last year, we had some matches in our grasp, but we didn’t finish well.”
Speaking of the opponents, Verma felt that Mysuru had a strong presence this time.
“Mysuru (Warriors) have a balanced side. I feel they would be a threat,” he stated.
Bellary Tuskers, who retained CA Karthik, Prasidh Krishna, and Devraj Patil, along with Verma, are hoping that Prasidh Krishna could create a huge impact. The 20-year old, who underwent training under Australian fast bowling great Glenn McGrath at the MRF Pace Foundation, shot to fame after he snatched six wickets against the visiting Bangladesh ‘A’
side in Mysuru last year.
That performance along with his good season for Tuskers earned him a spot in the Ranji Trophy squad. This year, Prasidh is again expected to be the spearhead of the bowling attack.
Additionally, the Bellary Tuskers have expanded their all-round options by signing up veteran Balachandra Akhil. The 38-year old has been a prominent player in the KPL since its inception. He was part of the victorious Provident Bangalore side in the inaugural edition of the league. Since then, he’s also rendered his services to Hubli Tigers and more recently to defending champions Bijapur Bulls.
More than his all-round abilities, Akhil is a smart leader and has in-depth knowledge of the game. Another big name in the side is coach, J Arunkumar. He has been at the helm of things for Karnataka over the past few years and has been instrumental in coaching the sides that went on to win various National titles.
This season the Bellary Tuskers’s focus would be on the youngsters in the squad. They’d want them to combine well with the seniors and thus present a strong, united team. All things considered, this could be their year of reckoning.
Squad :- Bellary Tuskers
Amit Verma, Kb Pawan, Akhil Balachandra, Devraj Patil, Prasidh Krishna, Karthik C A, Bharath Kondaji, Anil I G, Suneel Raju, S P Manjunath, Rohan Kadam, Chiranjivi Gs, Prateek Jain, Vinay Sagar, Vishnu Prabhas, Akshay Angadil, Surya Kumar, Gnanadeep Gundlapalli, Syed Abrar, Nagesh.
Arvind Venkatesh Reddy and Ragini Dwivedi
Abhishek Rai – CEO
Suresh V K – COO
J Arun Kumar – Head Coach
Ameet S N – Bowling Coach
Shailesh – Manager
David Johnson – Mentor
Dr. Nadeem – Physio
Venkey – Masseur
Santosh Setty – Co ordinater
Prashant Pujar- Trainer