IPL 2018: Who is Krishnappa Gowtham? Rajasthan Royals’ surprise hero against Mumbai Indians

IPL 2018: Who is Krishnappa Gowtham? Rajasthan Royals’ surprise hero against Mumbai Indians

IPL 2018 is reaching its halfway stage and on Sunday Rajasthan Royals’ Krishnappa Gowthan stole the headlines and scored an unbeaten 33 off 11 balls and clinched the match for RR from nowhere. So, who is Gowtham and how come he was paid Rs 6.2 crore without even playing for India?

Krishnappa Gowtham hails from Karnataka and is 29 years old. Like many cricketers from the region, Gowtham wanted to play for India, but the competition in India as well as in the Karnataka side kept him waiting. Gowtham finally made his first-class debut in 2012 against Uttar Pradesh and was waiting for that performance that could launch his career. Gowtham, in the meanwhile, forged a solid reputation as a big hitter and a canny off-spinner and was becoming some sort of a T20 specialist.

Krishnappa Gowtham’s big break came when in 2016 when he broke back into Karnataka’s Ranji Trophy side and took 18 wickets in his first three matches. His consistency earned him a place with the India A team in 2017 and his career was finally taking off. Gowtham was selected by Mumbai Indians in IPL 2017 for Rs 2 crore, but couldn’t play any matches due to stiff competition (read: Harbhajan Singh, Krunal Pandya, Karn Sharma) and was warming the benches.

IPL 2018: Rajasthan Royals overcome Mumbai Indians by 3 wickets, jump to 5th spot
Amid these moments was a bit of controversy as well when Gowtham took leave from the Duleep Trophy in 2017, citing illness, and was found a few days a later playing in the Karnataka Premier League (local T20 league). The BCCI pulled him out of the squad to play New Zealand A for actions that were a “gross insult to the system”. But, after this indiscretion Gowtham has tried to change his image and his work ethic and results are there for everyone to see.

Life and cricket are all about second chances and Gowtham’s big pay day arrived in 2018 when during mega-auction, Gowtham fetched a whopping bid of Rs 6.2 crore from Rajasthan Royals. Royals rated him pretty high and, unlike last year, Gowtham got to play on a consistent basis and despite being average and mediocre, the Karnataka lad’s big moment arrived against Mumbai Indians (ironic, isn’t it?). That one innings has changed the perception and now Gowtham is the talk of the town, Royals’ messiah and big gun player going forward.


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