22-year-old Gurkeerat Mann Singh might not be the most recognizable face in the Kings XI Punjab squad, but he has made quite the splash with the few opportunities he’s got with the franchise so far. Today, during the game against the Pune Warriors India, Gurkeerat not only cherished another such opportunity, but he made sure he dove as far as he could and grabbed it with both hands – to dismiss the dangerous Ross Taylor.
While there were several high points for KXIP in today’s match, Gurkeerat’s stunning catch at fine-leg stood out in the highlight reel of a very one-sided encounter. Here’s what this wiry cricketer from Punjab had to say about that unreal moment when he leapt like Superman and pulled out a howler:
Can you take us through that spectacular catch to dismiss Ross Taylor?
I’ve been working hard on my fielding over these past few days, so it was good to take that catch. It felt good, and it was a very crucial wicket – Ross Taylor’s wicket is always very important for the team. We had just talked that we had to go hard towards the ball in the field, and that’s how it happened.
Do you go through any special fielding drills?
No, not really. But I practice on a regular basis. The main thing is about the basics, which we do properly.
Do you have any fielding role models?
Jonty Rhodes. I’ve been watching him since childhood.
You pulled off a last-ball win last year in the IPL, and now this game-changing catch. Looks like you are making a habit of making spectacular plays.
I am not working towards something special, but it just comes off at the right moment. I’m lucky, in fact, to be able to do that.
As a batsman, who do you look up to?
My batting role model is Yuvraj Singh because I’ve practiced under Yog Sir (Yograj Singh) also – Yuvraj Singh’s father. And plus, I have been watching Yuvraj Singh since childhood.
And what is it like to play under one of the best ‘keeper-batsmen like Adam Gilchrist, who himself can be quite a big influence?
He gives us youngsters in the team a lot of tips. And when you have a person like this guiding you, it relieves a lot of pressure from us. And that’s the main thing for us – if you handle the pressure that way, it becomes easier on you.
So what are your individual goals and targets in IPL 2013?
I just want to perform whenever I get a chance. My main motive is just to perform well in the field and with the bat, and with anything that comes my way. And my ultimate goal is to win this tournament!