Video: When KL Rahul’s parents told him cricket not for small town kids and he cited MS Dhoni’s example
KL Rahul (left) and MS Dhoni. (Courtesy: Getty Images)

KL Rahul scripted history on Saturday when he became the first Indian batsman to score a century on One-Day International (ODI) debut. Having made his Test debut at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) in the Boxing Day Test of 2014, Rahul got his maiden ODI cap a year and half later and unlike his debut Test; he made it count at Harare. READ MORE: Twitterati hail KL Rahul on becoming first Indian to score a ton on ODI debut

Rahul’s journey to Indian ODI side has not been an easy ride. Hailing from the coastal town of Mangalore, making it big in cricket was never going to be easy but as a child, he kept chasing his dreams and followed the steps of MS Dhoni.

Though he excelled in cricket and other sports, he was also good in studies. His parents had apprehensions that cricket may not be for a small town kid. In an interview with BCCI, post his match-winning debut hundred, Rahul said, “My parents always told me that maybe cricket is not for a small town guy but I told them look at MS Dhoni.” ALSO READ: KL Rahul’s century on debut and 14 other statistical highlights from Zimbabwe vs India at Harare

Rahul called Dhoni “a role model” and said, “Getting my second cap from him is something I will treasure for a long time.” Rahul too is a part-time wicketkeeper and was seen donning the big gloves in the recently concluded IPL 2016. His debut Test was also Dhoni’s last. At MCG, he had received his Test cap from Dhoni and the same fate ensued at Harare as well.

Thanks to Rayudu!

Rahul then went on to acknowledge the role of Ambati Rayudu in the partnership. The duo shared an unbeaten 162-run stand for the second wicket and it was Rayudu who helped him get to the landmark.

“I would have been happy with a 95-96 not out but Rayudu was doing the calculations. Hats off to him for playing the second fiddle, he could have easily played a few shots and got it over. Thanks to him, I could get to hundred,” added Rahul.

India are now 1-0 up in the three-match series. The second ODI will be played on Monday. Watch the full interview of Rahul: