Rachin Ravindra gets central contract from New Zealand Cricket

| | Auckland
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Rachin Ravindra gets central contract from New Zealand Cricket

Wednesday, 10 July 2024 | PTI | Auckland

Rachin Ravindra gets central contract from New Zealand Cricket

Young New Zealand all-rounder of Indian origin Rachin Ravindra's success in the past one year, including the ODI World Cup where he scored tons of runs, has earned him his first central contract.

The 24-year-old figures in the list of 20 cricketers offered contracts on Wednesday for the 2024-25 season following a breakthrough season where he finished as the fourth leading run-scorer with 578 runs.

The ODI success had brought the spotlight on him during the IPL auction where he made his maiden appearance in the lucrative league for Chennai Super Kings this year after being bought for Rs 1.8 crore.

The top-order batter's rise was rewarded in January when he was named the ICC Emerging Player of the Year for 2023. In March, he became the youngest recipient of the Sir Richard Hadlee Medal.

Ravindra, who has his roots in Bengaluru where his grandparents live, said receiving his first central contract was special.

"Growing up, you'd see those contract lists come out each year and think it would be cool to be on that list one day -- and for it to eventuate now is a pinch-myself moment," he told New Zealand Cricket (NZC).

"It's been a really cool past 12 months playing international cricket. I've learned a lot and the hunger is definitely there to keep improving and giving to the Blackcaps. It's such a special group to be in, from players to support staff -- and that's been the most enjoyable part, to be honest," he added.

Besides Ravindra, three more new faces -- Ben Sears, Will O'Rourke and Jacob Duffy -- figure in the list of 20 players offered contracts by NZC.

"Playing a game you love with your mates for a living is something very special, and I hold it close to my heart," added Ravindra.

Ravindra has scored 519 runs in seven Tests, including a century, while he has three ODI tons in 25 games.

Sears, who played alongside Ravindra at the 2016 ICC Under-19 World Cup, featured in 11 T20Is for New Zealand during the 2023-24 season, claiming 13 wickets at an average of 22.

The pacer was also a travelling reserve in the New Zealand squad for the recently-concluded T20 World Cup in the West Indies and USA.

Pacer O'Rourke, who has made his international debut in all three formats in the past one year, has played three ODIs, three T20Is and two Tests, while 29-year-old right-arm quick Duffy has featured for New Zealand in 14 T20Is and six ODIs and was recently involved in the drawn T20I series against Pakistan in April.

Players offered central contracts for 2024-25: Finn Allen, Tom Blundell, Michael Bracewell, Mark Chapman, Devon Conway, Jacob Duffy, Matt Henry, Kyle Jamieson, Tom Latham, Daryl Mitchell, Henry Nicholls, Will O'Rourke, Ajaz Patel, Glenn Phillips, Rachin Ravindra, Mitchell Santner, Ben Sears, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Will Young.

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