Rajat Patidar Profile: Madhya Pradesh Cricketer's Elevation A Testament To India's Superb Domestic Structure

What makes Rajat Patidar special as compared to some of his other domestic contemporaries who were also in contention? Here's a look at numbers and testimonials


X/Rajat Patidar
Rajat Patidar, Indian International Cricketer currently playing for Madhya Pradesh in Domestic Cricket Photo: X/Rajat Patidar

There is very little chance that Rajat Patidar will make it to the playing eleven during India's opening Test against England unless the hosts decide on going a bowler short. (More Cricket News)

The 30-year-old Patidar's maiden entry into the Indian Test team is, however, a testament to the country's superb domestic structure that produces battle-hardened professionals and rewards them for their consistency and temperament.

Whether earning plaudits from the country's most successful domestic coach Chandrakant Pandit while playing Ranji Trophy for Madhya Pradesh or looking the part while having Virat Kohli at the other end in pressure IPL games, Patidar has proved at every level and is unlikely to disappoint when it matters the most.


So, what makes Patidar special as compared to some of his other domestic contemporaries who were also in contention?

Vijay Dahiya, who has seen enough of Indian domestic talent as a first-class and IPL coach as well as a broadcaster, explains it in simple terms.

"Rajat knows how to make big hundreds. It is one thing having the hunger but completely different while executing the plan. If someone is scoring 151 out of a team's total of 227 (India A vs England Lions), he is an above-average player," Dahiya told PTI while trying to explain Patidar's batting.


"He has a lot of time while playing bowlers in the 140-click range. Because he sees the ball early and plays it late."

What makes batters who have that extra millisecond special is their ability to have a wide range of strokes in their repertoire.

Someone can have two strokes for a similar delivery and Patidar is believed to be one.

He isn't very tall but an upright stance and firm knowledge of where his off-stump is make him a cut above rest.

While Patidar has an average of 45 plus with 4000 runs in 54 first-class games in nine years, his closest competitor Sarfaraz Khan, four years his junior, scored nearly 68 plus runs per game.

But then why is Rajat considered way better than Sarfaraz?

"If I try to read Ajit Agarkar-led panel's mind, they looked at a whole lot of variables. One of the things would be comfort against fast bowling. I think Rajat is much ahead of Sarfaraz over there. Just take the Lions game. Rajat scored a Daddy Hundred when others failed. Sarfaraz scored runs in the second innings when the track was at its easiest," a former national selector told PTI on conditions of anonymity.

"I agree you don't mix red ball and white ball game but IPL gives you an idea how you fare against top players. Rajat scored a hundred in the IPL play-off in a tricky situation whereas Sarfaraz's struggles against quick bowling is for everyone to see," he added.


Former Australia skipper Ian Chappell has often spoken about how too much of domestic cricket can lead to bad habits cropping up in players. A case in point was Graeme Hick, a prolific county-level run-getter, who never translated his performance at the international level.

Dahiya has his own take on the issue.

"Yes, bad habits do grow if you aren't transforming yourself to the next level. Suppose you are only playing Rani Trophy and people you are facing also playing that level, after a point, you will stop improving as you have decoded how to score runs or take wickets at this level.


"But then you suddenly play IPL and India A and you realise what you need to do at the next level," he explained.

Does he see Patidar being successful at the next level if he gets the chance?

"Oh hundred percent,” Dahiya replied.

"Rajat is 30 plus and he knows that, unlike a youngster who might have a second coming, this is the only chance he will get if he gets it. He wouldn't want to waste it. He has the game for elite level."