Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

In a recent viral video, a tennis ball cricketer was found picking a stunning catch with his boundary-rope acrobatics and football skills. Even Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar, former England batsman Michael Vaughan, several other cricketers and fans were impressed by the incredible catch. They all went on to tweet the video clip.

Following Sachin’s tweet, Kiran Tarlekar became a social media celebrity of sorts. His mobile phone has been flooded with several messages from fans and well wishers since then. He has also given at least 100 interviews.

“Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar, the God of cricket, mentioned my catch, what else you need in the life,” said Tarlekar during one of his interviews.

The tennis ball cricketer belongs to Belgaum, a sleepy town in northern Karnataka.

In the viral video clip, the Sairaj Warriors player is found leaping over the boundary-rope and bicycle-kicking the ball away from the ropes before completing the catch to dismiss Narendra Mangura of SRS Hindustan in a local cricket match. 

Heaping praise on Tarlekar’s incredible effort, former England great Vaughan tipped the catch as the ‘greatest catch of all time.’

Recollecting his magnificent acrobatic effort Tarlekar said, “The plan was not to get it over the boundary rope. But when I lost the balance I thought let’s try a flying kick like a hero to keep the ball in the game.”

Tarlekar credits his agility for picking the catch as part of the preparation for the physical exam of the Indian Army. 

“My father was in Indian Army. My elder brother is in Army. I also wanted to join the Army. While doing the preparation, I used to run 10 km every morning. I have got this addiction of fitness,” said Tarlekar.

Notably, Tarlekar plays tennis ball cricket to cover his education fees and help his father who works as a security guard. The tennis ball player is currently pursuing a Master of Physical Education.

Earlier in 2019, Tarlekar had the chance to bowl to Ishan Kishan and Priyank Panchal as a net bowler. Tarlekar has hit stardom in the last few days following his catch and Sachin’s video tweet. Now, Tarlekar has only one wish and that is to meet his hero Sachin Tendulkar.