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Cricket’s ‘wonder boy’ Pranav Dhanawade gets reality check

After getting a scholarship in the first year from Mumbai Cricket Association, Pranav Dhanawade, who became a sensation after scoring more than 1000 runs in a school match, has not yet received any grant from the association for this year.

cricket Updated: Jul 04, 2017 09:17 IST
Harit Joshi, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Pranav Dhanawade,Mumbai Cricket Association,MCA
Pranav Dhanawade had broken the record of the highest individual score in any form of cricket when he scored 1009 runs in an inter-school match in Muimbai in January 2016.(HT Photo)

Pranav Dhanawade, the world’s maiden batsman to score a thousand-plus runs in an innings, is experiencing a reality check.

After getting the first year’s scholarship from Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA), Dhanawade’s family has not yet received any grant from the association for this year.

The MCA will review Dhanawade’s performance before giving out the second year’s scholarship.

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Last year the MCA was among the first to announce a Rs.10,000 monthly scholarship for Dhanawade for five years after his 1009-run epic knock in a school match.

The association in its statement had said that they will “monitor the cricketing and educational activities of the youngster for the said period”.

“When the scholarship was awarded, it was mentioned that the MCA will review his performance after every season before proceeding for next season’s scholarship. The review has not yet taken place. Once it is done, it will be placed before the managing committee to take a call on whether to continue or not,” MCA joint secretary Unmesh Khanvilkar told Hindustan Times.

Dhanawade’s family though is clueless about the delay.

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“Already six months have passed this year and we have no clue what the MCA has decided,” Dhanawade’s father Prashant told HT.

“We have not approached the MCA because I don’t know whom to contact there. We don’t know whether it’s because of some delay or they have taken a decision to discontinue the scholarship.”

Dhanawade, a KC Gandhi School student, shot into international limelight after his world record individual score during an MCA recognised inter-school match in January 2016.

However, since that knock, which also earned him the attention of Indian cricketers, Dhanawade has gone off the hooks with no tall scores in the last season.

Though the 17-year-old made the cut among the 78 players selected for MCA U-19 selection trials, he failed to make the cut in the 35 selected for the U-19 off-season training camp at the Bandra Kurla Complex ground.

Coach Mobin Shaikh had even dropped Dhanawade during an MCA selection trials match recently.

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“He has been keeping the wickets well, but he needs to put in a lot of effort in his batting. That is why I have sent him to Bangalore to practice in the off-season. He is then scheduled to go to England for a cricket tour organised by Dilip Vengsarkar,” he said.

“Hopefully, he gets good experience which can be utilised when the season starts. This year is going to be crucial. I have told him to take his non-selection for the training camp in a positive way and work even harder.”

Apart from the financial strain, it is the dearth of a proper practice arena that Dhanawade is struggling for.

“The wickets on which the boys practice are not proper. It hampers the state of the balls and bats. If we have a proper wicket here, it will be very helpful to the players,” said Mobin.

First Published: Jul 04, 2017 09:11 IST