I represented the state in badminton. In cricket, my favourite is Kapil Dev and I can't say how happy I was when he took his 400th wicket. I still keep that tape with me. Another cricketer I like is Mohinder Amarnath. I like him because he was a good all-rounder. I also like Dilip Vengsarkar, because many used to say that I look like him. I also like K Srikkanth, who was such a good entertainer. Now I like Sachin Tendulkar.
When Badrinath was playing cricket outside the flat with his friends that I noticed his talent. He was eight. His bat was a stick, which was almost like the stump, and they were playing with a rubber ball. Still I saw him middling the ball perfectly. Those who saw him play felt he had natural talent and could come up with proper coaching.
I had an ambition for him then itself, which was the highest, and that is him representing the country. I want him to not only play for the country but lead the country too.
When he was 10, he played for the state Under-13. For three years he played for the state Under-13. After that he could not play for three years because his school wanted him to concentrate on studies. As his father, I was more interested in cricket than his studies. I never used to ask how many marks he got; I only asked his score!
Yet, I had some reservations about him becoming a professional cricketer but I overcame that soon.
Now that he is playing Ranji Trophy matches, all my leisure time is spent watching his games. I always watch his games very critically. The last Ranji Trophy match was shown live and I didn't miss a single moment. I told him where he went wrong and what he should have done so that he could analyse his game.
I do not have to help him to be mentally strong; he is. When he was in school itself, he was very strong mentally.
Many wrote that he had his chance several times to enter the Indian team. This time, they said he was waiting at the bus stand yet missed the bus!
I was a little proud when he was made the captain of the Tamil Nadu team, but the proudest moment for me will be when he plays for India and performs well. I want him to make it to the Indian team, perform well and stay there.