Rinku Singh is fast emerging as one of India’s most exciting batters in the T20 format, and he’ll look to make an impression in the five-match T20I series against Australia that starts in Visakhapatnam on Thursday. The 26-year-old from Uttar Pradesh opened up to JioCinema in an exclusive chat.
What are your thoughts on your journey so far?
When I began playing cricket, I didn’t think I will go on to play at this level. Initially, it was all about enjoying the game. After that a lot of things changed. I began working hard looking at others. The situation at home was not very good. So that was one reason I took up cricket, hoping I could bring home some money. I knew if I worked hard, I would succeed.
Have things improved at home after your recent successes?
Things are fine at home now. We have built our house, there are fewer difficulties compared to what we used to face before. I play cricket for my family. I work hard for them. That’s the belief that carries me forward. (Here’s Why Mitchell Starc Was Wearing Black Arm Band In India vs Australia Cricket World Cup 2023 Final – Details Inside)
Tell us something about your mindset while batting?
When I come out to bat, I want to face 5-6 balls and then take things forward accordingly. The mindset I have adopted is that I try to take the game into the last 2-3 overs before opening up. Most of the times I succeed in these overs.
Tell us about the mindset when you hit those five iconic sixes in the TATA IPL 2023 against Gujarat Titans?
I wasn’t batting very well that day as I had managed eight off 14 balls and we were almost losing. We hit a six and a boundary in the second-last over. That gave us some confidence. In the last over, I was already feeling that we would lose the game. I didn’t even know how many runs were needed. When I hit three successive sixes, I was told that we need 10 runs in the last two balls. That’s when I felt we could win and I hit two more sixes. None of us expected to win that match.
Your thoughts on meeting Shah Rukh Khan (the Kolkata Knight Riders team owner)?
I got a video call from Sir after hitting those five sixes. That day he told me that people invite him for weddings, but he rarely attends. But, that he will attend my wedding. So, let’s see when I get married and when he can come home.
Tell us something about your feelings on making your India debut?
All of us work so that we can some day play for India. Even I was working hard for this. It was a terrific feeling when my name was announced for the series against Ireland this year. Everyone in the Indian team was happy. Even my parents were thrilled. My mother would tell me everyone plays IPL but playing for India is the big deal. So, I fulfilled her dream also. When I got the India jersey with the No. 35 printed on it, I was really happy. I made a video call to my mother.
Your feelings on winning the gold medal at the Asian Games 2023?
That was a very nice feeling. Every athlete has to work really hard for their medals. There were other Indian athletes there and they too won medals. So, it was a very good experience. There’s a lot of value to a gold medal.