As Tasmania announced two new recruits for the 2021-22 Australian domestic season, the name of Nivethan Radhakrishnan instantly caught everyone’s eyes.
Having grown up in Sydney, Radhakrishnan will be moving to Hobart after earning his career’s maiden professional contract with the Tasmania Tigers.
Nivethan Radhakrishnan, the 18-year-old, is from a rare breed of ambidextrous spinners. He is, interestingly, the only such male bowler available right now in the Australian pathway.
Radhakrishnan is naturally a right-arm off-break bowler but can also change over to become a left-armer depending on his and his team’s needs – a luxury rare few could offer to their side.
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What would be much to the delight of Tasmania, Nivethan Radhakrishnan also possesses decent batting abilities. The left-hand batter has represented Australia U-16 before and opened for Sydney University in the New South Wales (NSW) Premier Cricket semi-final last year.
Indian born Radhakrishnan shifted to Australia when he was only 10 years old and has since developed a great liking for the sport. The youngster harbours dreams of playing for Australia at the highest level one day.
Who is Nivethan Radhakrishnan?
Apart from Radhakrishnan, Tasmania have also recruited 21-year-old fast bowling all-rounder, Brad Hope, to their squad for the 2021-22 summer. Hope had won the Olly Cooley Medal for being Western Australia’s best performer in their Premier Cricket. Hope had averaged only 15 for his 41 wickets and struck over 900 runs at 54 per innings.
Hope spent two years on WA’s rookie players’ list and even represented the club in the Sheffield Shield for a solitary outing against NSW. He also caught attention with an unbeaten fifty for Cricket Australia XI against a visiting Pakistan side in the summer of 2019-20.
“Brad and Nivvi are both really exciting young cricketers, and we are thrilled that they are coming to join the Tigers program and progress their careers here in Tasmania,” Jeff Vaughan, the Tasmania Tigers, coach was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au.
Tasmania, meanwhile, have at the same time omitted rookies Keegan Oates, Jack White, pacers Tom Rogers and Alex Pycecroft and the now-retired former Test batsman, Alex Doolan, from their squad.
The core of the group remains intact, though, after Jake Doran, Jackson Bird, Jordan Silk and Beau Webster signed contract extensions with the state side. Tasmania have also roped in Gabe Bell, Caleb Jewell, Sam Rainbird, Charlie Wakim, Tim Ward, Jarrod Freeman and Iain Carlisle on new deals.
“It’s a really great group of players we’ve been building here at the Tigers. We were really pleased – particularly with the second half of the season,” coach Vaughan said.
“We were fighting for spots in finals right up until the end, and ended up missing out on the Shield final by just three points, and with the one-day competition, we were in the hunt there almost right until the end, with it coming down to that final game.”
“We don’t feel we need to drastically change our personnel or our processes – it’s just about fine-tuning a few bits of pieces and continuing to put in the work.”
Tasmania finished fourth in both the Sheffield Shield and the List A competition last summer and will be hoping to progress further and lift at least one of those titles in the coming season.
Tasmania men’s contract list for 2021-22 season: Tom Andrews, Gabe Bell, Jackson Bird, Iain Carlisle, Jake Doran, Nathan Ellis, Jarrod Freeman (rookie), Brad Hope (rookie), Caleb Jewell, Ben McDermott, Riley Meredith, Lawrence Neil-Smith, Mitch Owen (rookie), Tim Paine (CA contract), Nivethan Radhakrishnan (rookie), Sam Rainbird, Peter Siddle, Jordan Silk, Mac Wright, Matthew Wade, Charlie Wakim, Tim Ward, Beau Webster