Paul Chandrashekar Valthaty, one of the umpteen talent from India did not got recognised through the Indian Premier League (IPL). Paul, was one of the major stars of the 2011 edition. He had a dream run starting with a first 100 of the season. On that electric night of April 2011, Valthaty announced himself on the big stage. It is 2018 now and he’s nowhere near the stage.
In IPL 2011, Valthaty played for Preity Zinta owned Kings XI Punjab and took the stage by storm after scoring a century against the then mighty attack of the Chennai Super Kings (CSK). Valthaty scored 120 not out and that was the highest individual score that year. Valthaty with a strike rate of 136.98 totaled 463 runs from 14 innings. He overshadowed Adam Gilchrist and was the second highest scorer after Shaun Marsh for Kings XI. Interestingly, despite being in the U-19 for the 2002 World Cup alongside with Parthiv Patel and Irfan Pathan, he could not make his mark until his maiden and last IPL ton.
Valthaty spent almost a decade in the wilderness between 2002 and 2011. Valthaty made his first-class debut for Himachal Pradesh in 2011-12 but injuries kept him away from competitive cricket every now and then. In IPL 2012, Valthaty couldn’t managed to replicate the success of 2011. In 2012, he scored only 30 runs in 6 matches before losing his spot in the KXIP. In the 2013 version, the right-hander could only get one game in which he was out for 6. That was the last time Valthaty played professional cricket and remained unsold in the 2014 players auction.
Since then he has been playing cricket for his employers Air India. Because he got this job under sports quota, Valthaty just has to practice and turn up for games instead of working in the office. But these games lack a competitive intensity as well as quality if we compare it to the level of cricket in the IPL. But such is life at 34 for Paul Valthaty.
Meanwhile, now, Valthaty got married to his longtime girlfriend Caroll in 2013 and has a daughter, Aradhna. We all should learn lessons from such cases in the past where players couldn’t manage to live up to the hype that was built around them after performing in the IPL.