3 Indians who had unheralded international careers before they became T20 stars
The different formats in cricket not only have different rules and restrictions, but also require different approaches, mindsets and skills. Some legendary players have tasted success in all the formats of the game through their adaptability, dedication and hard work.
The competition in the Indian domestic circuit is quite stiff, and arguably one of the toughest across the globe. The nation has a gigantic pool of talented domestic cricketers who burn the midnight oil to represent the country at the highest level.
Millions of talented aspiring cricketers are eager to represent the country at the international stage, but only a few succeed. In that context, the Indian Premier League has been the perfect platform for the domestic Indian cricketers to showcase their talent and emerge as a renowned cricketer in the international arena.
On that note, here is a look at three Indian T20 stars players who played international cricket before they tasted success in the shortest format of the game and gained popularity.
#3 Jaydev Unadkat
Jaydev Unadkat came into the limelight when he bagged 7 wickets in the 2010 edition of the Under-19 Cricket World Cup. The lanky left-arm fast bowler impressed everyone with his ability to move the ball at a decent pace.
Unadkat earned a spot in the Indian Test team in the same year, against South Africa in their backyard. The Indian pacer went wicket-less in his only Test and was subsequently dropped from the Indian squad.
Unadkat rose to glory when he picked up a five-wicket haul in the 2013 edition of the Indian Premier League for the Royal Challengers Bangalore. The Gujarat born bowler was immediately rewarded for his phenomenal performances with a spot in the Indian limited overs side.
Unfortunately, Unadkat could never stamp his authority in the international arena and managed to grab a mere 22 wickets in his 18 international matches across all formats.
#2 Laxmi Ratan Shukla
Laxmi Ratan Shukla is one of the most consistent all-rounders to have ever played for Bengal. He is one of the few players with a double of 5000 runs and 150 wickets in the Ranji Trophy arena.
Shukla made his IPL debut for the Kolkata Knight Riders in the inaugural edition of the tournament, and grabbed eyeballs with his decent performances with both the bat and the ball during his six-year-long IPL career. The all-rounder made his ODI debut at the age of 17, in the year 1998, but could not prove his prowess as an all-rounder.
Shukla played 3 ODIs for India, scoring 18 runs and grabbing a solitary wicket.
#1 Joginder Sharma
Joginder Sharma became an immediate superstar for India when he bowled a superb last over in the 2007 World T20 final against the arch rivals Pakistan.
Not many knew Joginder before the mega event that year. He was picked up the Chennai super Kings in the inaugural edition of the Indian Premier league and played 16 matches throughout his IPL career.
A lesser known fact about the all-rounder is that he made his ODI debut for India in the year 2003 against Bangladesh. Joginder scored a quick-fire 29* in his second ODI but lacked consistency in the future games, which led to his exclusion from the squad.