Stuart Binny has the look of a secured confident individual, especially in the Rajasthan Royals colours. The reason being that he has been involved in some match winning performances for them in the past. He has been one of their regular Indian stars, who has proved himself and made a mark. With his ability to score quick vital runs at the end of the innings and bowl some tidy fruitful overs as well, he is a Captains dream go-to man when in despair.
The world of cricket was not new to Stuart Binny. His father, Roger, an accomplished Indian cricketer, was a part of the famous Indian winning World Cup team of 1983. An ideal family environment revolving around the game of cricket would have been the perfect setting for a young Binny.
But Stuart, has a mind of his own and so in his initial years at Frank Anthony Public School in Bangalore, he focused on playing hockey. He did senior schooling at St. Joseph's, an institution of one of India’s greatest cricketers, Rahul Dravid. Stuart had the natural ball sense to have pursued any sport and fortunately, he took up cricket. Indian cricket got a hard-hitting all-rounder, rather than an Indian hockey short corner specialist.
The St. Joseph’s senior school had a strict regulation and that was for the boys to play one sport seriously. The presence of his father as the school coach and maybe getting a home advantage of an easy life, persuaded the young Stuart to take up cricket.
Life thereafter, was not what he had envisaged it to be. A few good performances at the Junior level, prevailed upon Stuart into playing cricket seriously. The father and son duo could be seen on the ground sweating away, well before the rest. As apart from mastering the art of batting and bowling, the senior Binny, realised the importance of physical fitness.
Karnataka has produced some of India’s most brilliant cricketers. Stuart, a cricket fanatic, watched and marvelled at each one of their performances. Even at present, he enjoys sitting in front of the Television watching cricket, to better himself. A place in the Karnataka State side was a dream come true in 2004-5 for him. A few years of baptism into 1st class cricket and Stuart soon became Karnataka’s dependable all-rounder. In 2014, the Chinese lucky year of the horse, he played for India in both the ODIs and in a Test match as well. The only father and son duo to do so from Karnataka.
Stuart’s personality is radically different from his cool, docile and quiet father. He believes in making an impact and plays his cricket fearlessly. He epitomises in many ways, the flamboyant cricket stroke-makers of the past. On his debut Test match at Trent Bridge, Nottingham, he scored a swashbuckling 78 runs, that had the spectators and the cricket critics speak highly of the innings, as it helped India draw the match. He also stunned the cricket world with his bowling. He has the distinction of having the best One Day International bowling figures , of capturing 6 wickets against Bangladesh and conceding only 4 runs in 2014.
He loves relaxing at his small retreat in the forest of Bandipur. He exudes excitement when discussing the wild life that exists there and the wonderful occasions which he has had to photograph animals in their natural habitat.
He married Mayanti, the famous cricket presenter and the face of Star Cricket in 2012 and during their free time, she is astounded to see Stuart still engrossed watching a game of cricket on the box. The tight schedules of the Indian cricket calendar, keeps both of them busy, but a few moments of freedom in the tranquil surrounding of their abode in the jungle, is what gets them both charged to conquer and flourish in their respective cricketing worlds.
RR was the franchise that brought Stuart into the limelight of Indian cricket. His aim now is to fulfill their dream of winning the cup, the RR go-to man is fit and ready to strike.
About the author:
Yajurvindra Singh is a former cricketer who represented India between 1977 and 1979. He enjoys the unique distinction of achieving 2 world records – 5 catches in an innings, and 7 catches in a match - on his debut.