'Have to be harsh to hurt their egos': Chandrakant Pandit reveals how he managed 'overconfident' MI star Kumar Kartikeya

Updated on Jun 29, 2022 01:11 PM IST
  • Madhya Pradesh's Ranji Trophy-winning coach opened up on working with the spinner who finished the 2021/22 season as the second-highest wicket-taker. 
Kumar Kartikeya playing for MI in IPL 2022.(PTI)
Kumar Kartikeya playing for MI in IPL 2022.(PTI)

Madhya Pradesh lifted a maiden Ranji Trophy title in the 2021/22 edition of the tournament, beating Mumbai in the final last week. The Aditya Shrivastava-led side chased down a 108-run target with six wickets to spare on the final day of the match, with its star batter Rajat Patidar hitting the winning runs. There were a number of brilliant individual performances on show for MP, with three of their batters including Patidar slamming a century in the first innings, while spinner Kumar Kartikeya taking four wickets in the second innings.

The left-arm spinner sprung into limelight in the 2022 edition of the Indian Premier League, where he was roped in by the Mumbai Indians mid-way through the season as a replacement for Arshad Khan. He enjoyed a fruitful outing with MI, taking five wickets in four games.

Also read: Watch: Hardik Pandya's post-match captaincy gesture after India vs Ireland T20I brings back memories of MS Dhoni

In the Ranji Trophy, Kartikeya Kartikeya finished the season as the second-highest wicket-taker (32 wickets in 11 innings), picking three five-wicket hauls. However, MP's title-winning coach Chandrakant Pandit has revealed that he had to manage Kartikeya's ‘overconfidence’ when the coach came into the side in 2020.

“With certain players I have to be harsh with words in order to hurt their egos,” Pandit said in an interview with News18.

“No way is the intention to put them down, but to encourage them to put their best foot forward. For example, Kumar Kartikeya Singh (left arm spinner) was, maybe, a little overconfident. Perhaps a little casual. So I had to really pump him up in my Mumbai language,” said Pandit.

The Madhya Pradesh coach, in the same interview, added that Kartikeya fears him ‘as much as his parents’, but insisted that there is “hardly anyone” who shares the same ability as him.

“He is a steady bowler with a lot of confidence in his own ability. He keeps on asking me if he can bowl one or two chinaman deliveries. I have never stopped him. He did it successfully in the final. He can be overconfident and feeling low too. I think he fears me as much as his parents. There is hardly anyone of his calibre. Yes, he should be able to make it to the higher level,” said Pandit.


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