Vikram Solanki Biography
Vikram Solanki is an English cricketer born on 1st April 1976. Born in Udaipur in the state of Rajasthan in India, Solanki was raised in Wolverhampton.
He was a right-handed batsman who could both open the innings as well as bat in the middle order. Occasionally, Solanki bowled right-arm offbreak.
Solanki made his first-class debut for Worcestershire in 1996. Although Solanki is predominantly a batsman, he was forced to bowl on his debut and picked up a ten-wicket haul.
Solanki’s consistency as first-class batsman is reflected by the fact that he averaged over 40 in 1999, 2000, 2002, 2004 and 2006.
Solanki was a part of the England A team which toured Zimbabwe and South Africa in 1998-99 and also to Bangladesh and New Zealand in the next season. His fine performances on those tour resulted in him being called up to the national team.
Solanki made his ODI debut against South Africa in Bloemfontein in 2000, but failed to get a chance to bat as England won by 9 wickets. He was retained in the line-up for the next ODI at Cape Town and returned with seven runs. The English selectors continued with Solanki for 8 matches. However, Solanki had a dismal average of 16 with a highest score of only 24.
Solanki made his T20I debut against Australia at Southampton in 2005 which happened to be the first T20I to be played by the English team. He made only 9 runs and had to wait for a further two years before his next T20I appearance.
Rise to Glory
After making his comeback to the national team in 2003, Solanki failed to convert his starts to big scores for a few matches, before he made 106 against South Africa at The Oval. He shared a 200-run opening partnership with Marcus Trescothick and guided England to victory.
Solanki’s second ODI ton also came while chasing a score. He made 100 against Zimbabwe at Bulawayo in 2004. In course of the run chase, he shared a 138-run opening stand with Ian Bell to lay the path to victory.
Although Solanki was one of the most elegant batsmen of his generation, his shortfalls lay in the fact that he could never translate his talent into performances on the international stage. As a result, he finished his England his career with an average of 26.75 which is very modest.
Solanki spent 17 years of his first-class career at Worcestershire. In 2012, financial pressure forced him to jump ship to Surrey at the age of 36, when everyone expected him to retire. He represented his native state Rajasthan in the Ranji Trophy for a single season in 2006-07.
In 2005, Solanki wrote his name in cricket’s history books by becoming the first super substitute fielder to be used against Australia. England were in trouble at 93/6 when Solanki was drafted in to replace Simon Jones and made an important 53*.
Solanki retired from all forms of cricket in 2005 after having made more than 18,000 first-class runs.
Since his retirement, Solanki graduated as a lawyer and is currently studying the Legal Practice Course at the University of Law.