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IPL 2019: Wanted to click a selfie with Virat Kohli, will now play with him in RCB - Prayas Ray Barman

The 15-year-old clearly likes to wear his heart on his sleeves much like the captain of his Indian Premier League side Royal Challengers Bangalore.

cricket Updated: Dec 19, 2018 12:53 IST
Baidurjo Bhose
Baidurjo Bhose
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
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File image of Prayas Ray Barman.

“How would you feel if from wanting one selfie with Virat Kohli you are told that you will play with him in the next IPL?” Prayas Ray Barman asks this reporter when asked to explain how he feels to have become an overnight star after the IPL auction in Jaipur on Tuesday. The 15-year-old clearly likes to wear his heart on his sleeves much like the captain of his Indian Premier League side Royal Challengers Bangalore.

The Bengal leg-spinner makes no bones about the fact that RCB has been his favourite team in the league because of the man he considers his role model — Kohli. Having attended trials with Rajasthan Royals, Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals, it was only poetic justice that RCB picked him up. Interestingly, RCB had called him to arrange for a trial, but the move never happened.

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“I have been following IPL from the first season like all have and RCB was always my favourite team. Yes, no points for guessing that the reason is Kohli. He is not just a role model, but also someone I look to take inspiration from. I think not just me, every budding cricketer wants to emulate the India skipper. He is just dedication personified. Looking forward to spending time with him and the other stalwarts in RCB,” he smiled.

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He started playing at the Ram Pal Cricket Academy in Gargi College in South Delhi, then came the Bengal call-up and now he will be heading to Bengaluru for the IPL. But for the youngster, it is a pain he is happy to go through. “Yes, from Delhi to Kolkata to now Bengaluru. Quite a bit of travelling you would say. But isn’t the IPL all about playing and travelling? I am all geared up for that and who wouldn’t? These opportunities don’t come everyday. I will not shy away from accepting reality that I wasn’t expecting to be picked for such a huge sum of money. But money is not the point. The fact that my parents, sister and family is happy is what counts for me,” he said.

Asked to express what he went through during the bidding war, Ray Barman said: “Shockwaves man! To watch your name being bid for is a surreal feeling. I was just waiting for my turn and thought it would be nice if I got an opportunity to play for one of the franchises. But to be picked for Rs1.5 crore by RCB? It hasn’t sunk in yet. No it hasn’t.”

First Published: Dec 19, 2018 11:11 IST