Andhra Pradesh’s Hanuma Vihari was fantastic with the bat during the ongoing unofficial four-day Test matches of India A against South Africa A at home.
He was impressive in the first unofficial Test in Bengaluru that the hosts won by an innings and 30 runs against the Proteas, but his mind-blowing inning of 148 runs in the second Test at the Platinum Oval caught more attention, as it helped India A to post the massive total of 345 on the board in the first innings.
Vihari, who batted for 413 minutes and got out on the second day at Alur, got a golden opportunity to prove himself, as he got to bat at No.3 position his preferred position in domestic cricket and he proved it against South Africa A.
Following his terrific innings, Vihari told Sportstar on Sunday (12 August), “No. 3 is the position I have been used to, but coming to India A, you definitely may not get the position you want, so I was going at No 5. When I had the opportunity to bat up the order in this game, I exactly knew what I had to do as I am familiar with the situation.”
He further added, “I had to consolidate as we lost Mayank (Agarwal) early. It was a fresh wicket and it was doing a bit. There was moisture, so I knew I had to leave a lot of balls and be patient.”
The 24-year-old has been fantastic with the willow at the domestic circuit over the years, but yet to sport blue jersey and even the right-hander believes that he would have played for India long ago if he had he been from Mumbai, Delhi or Karnataka. Even, Vihari changed his base from Hyderabad to Andhra Pradesh in search of getting opportunity to play for India.
Playing for India A, Vihari is getting a taste of junior level cricket and hoping to make it to the senior level.
He signed off by saying, "I try to play more with my mind than my skills. At this level, it is all about the mindset. All guys (from various states) have their own individual preparations, so to see the different methods is exciting. Although it is India A, but to represent the country is a different feeling altogether.”