New Delhi: Among the many surprise picks in the IPL 2016 player auction was Rajasthan pacer Nathu Singh as well.
Nathu is considered as the fastest bowler in the India at the moment, hence it did not come as a surprise that he found an employer in the cash-rich league.
But what surprised many was the price Mumbai Indians paid to secure his services.
After a bidding war with Delhi Daredevils and Royal Challengers Bangalore, the IPL champions had to shell out a whooping 3.2 crore.
Here is the pacer's journey from the dusty plains of Rajasthan to MI's all-star squad.
1) Nathu's father works in factory that produces electrical wires just outside Jaipur.
2) Impressed with his skills in tennis ball cricket, Nathu's friends prodded him to train with a leather ball.
3) He joined Surana Academy in Jaipur. His father had to approach a money lender to pay the annual Rs 10,000 to secure Nathu's entry to the academy.
4) He made it to Rajasthan’s U-19 team in 2013.
5) Nathu got a lucky break when Pankaj Singh picked up an injury a day before Rajasthan's Ranji Trophy encounter against Delhi.
6) Nathu's debut outing of 7 for 87 against Delhi even impressed Gautam Gambhir who was in fact dismissed by the pacer.
7) Nathu has taken 12 wickets for Rajasthan in his six first-class matches.
8) He was drafted into the Board President's XI squad to play against South African. Chief national selector said Nathu had the 'X-factor'.
9) The 20-year-old has also trained under legendary Australian fast bowler Glenn McGrath at the MRF pace academy.
10) He repeatedly clocks 140kmph on the speed gun and has even touched 145kmph.
With the likes of McGrath and Rahul Dravid terming him as India's fast bowling future, all eyes will be on Nathu at the upcoming edition of the IPL.
More importantly, he will be part of a dressing room that not only has some of the world's best players but also coaches and mentors.
A successful IPL stint will most definitely help him make it to India's national side.