IPL auction 2018: Rinku Singh lives in a small two-room house within an LPG distribution company’s storage compound need Aligarh stadium. Ever since the allrounder from Uttar Pradesh was signed at the IPL auction 2018 by Kolkata Knight Riders, he has been the talk of the town. However, his journey to the top is no less than an inspiration for young aspirants. Rinku’s father Khanchandra works as a delivery man at the company and is responsible for delivering LPG cylinders door-to-door. His elder brother drives an auto rickshaw while another brother works in a coaching centre. A perfect example of the phrase – ‘rags to riches’. Rinku was bought by the Shah Rukh Khan-owned KKR for Rs 80 lakh after a bidding war with Mumbai Indians.
Interestingly, the 20-year-old all-rounder kept a close eye on the auctions and when KKR and MI were going hammer and tongs at each other, he was sitting in front of his TV, watching his dream unfold. In an interview with Indian Express, Rinku said that he thought he would go for the base price (Rs 20 lakh) but was rather picked for 80! The first thought that came to his mind was that to contribute to his elder brother’s wedding and save up a little for sister’s marriage.
Rinku is the third of the five children and hails from a humble background. Back in 2015, his family had a debt of Rs five lakh which they were struggling to pay. It was beyond the means of the money-earners in the family, and Rinku wasn’t academically good – “Ninth fail” he says. He knew his only chance lay in cricket.
The all-rounder saved up his meagre daily allowances which he received while representing Uttar Pradesh U19 side and other representation money from cricket. Everything went in repaying debt. Unfortunately, in 2016, Rinku, who was close to being selected for ICC U19 World Cup, but could not make the cut.
During the interview, he said that once when he asked his brother for a job he took him to a place where they told him that he could be a sweeper. Rinku came back home and asked his mother to let him try his luck in cricket instead.
However, Rinku’s family started believing him when he won a motorbike after winning the man-of-the-series award in a tournament in Delhi.
In nine Ranji Trophy games, Rinku has scored 692 runs with an average of 49. He was getting noticed. Last year, Kings XI Punjab had roped him in, but he did not actually get to play. Then luck turned again when Mumbai Indians called him for a selection trial where he slammed a 31-ball 91 runs.