An Annet cricket star

Rtn C J Narayanan (centre) with (from L) his son Narayan Jagadeesan, wife Ganga, daughter Sharada and her husband Kirthi Krishnan.
Rtn C J Narayanan (centre) with (from L) his son Narayan Jagadeesan, wife Ganga, daughter Sharada and her husband Kirthi Krishnan.

It was a huge knock by 26-year-old Narayan Jagadeesan for his Team Tamil Nadu, playing with  minnows Arunachal Pradesh at the Vijay Hazare Trophy cricket match, 50 overs a side, one-day format, in Bengaluru recently. It brought this lanky, wicket-keeper batsman into the spotlight of world cricket. His father, Rtn C J Narayanan from RC ­Coimbatore Metropolis, RID 3201, has one constant advice for his son: “Keep up the concentration to earn the blue jersey.”

During his power-packed innings, Jagadeesan broke seven world records in List-A cricket — highest individual score (277); consecutive five tons; ­fastest 200 runs in 114 balls; fastest 250 runs; highest partnership for any wicket (416); highest opening partnership; and highest team total of 502. Next day, the national dailies went gaga over the triumph of this ­Coimbatore lad. His parents, Narayanan and Ganga, are optimistic that their son is on the way to finding a place in the national team. “He is capable of many such splendid performances,” says his father. Having played for Tata Electric Company, now Tata Power, in Mumbai for eight years from 1980, Narayanan is well aware of the rigours of modern-day cricket, especially the T20 format that frustrates even the toughest player in world cricket.

Jagadeesan started playing cricket at the age of four at the Stanes Anglo Indian HS School; and represented the district Under-13 at nine. “After completing BCom at PSG College six years ago, he did MBA at Sri ­Ramakrishna College. Throughout his academic journey, he played cricket with a rare passion, and made his first-class debut for Tamil Nadu in the Ranji Trophy match against Madhya Pradesh in 2016–17,” recalls his father. And got a maiden ton in his debut match, to boot!

His mother Ganga and sister ­Sharada can’t wait to see him perform for Team India. “With prayers on their lips, they look forward to him batting for the country. God willing, my son will climb up the ladder,” smiles Narayanan, who joined Rotary in 2007. While he is not worried that Chennai Super Kings has released his son, “I am confident that he will be picked up by a good team in the IPL auction.” RCs ­Coimbatore ­Metropolis and Coimbatore ­Manchester honoured the player with Young Achiever Awards. Earlier, he was felicitated at the RID 3201 conference.

“My only aim now is to live the present without thinking about the future and enjoy playing cricket,” quips Jagadeesan.

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