Shivam Dube who?
Shivam Dube is a 25-year-old allrounder from Mumbai. Tall, at six feet, he is capable of bowling right-arm seam-ups in the mid-130s and is a strong left-hand middle-order batsman. On auction-eve, he hit five sixes off five deliveries in a Ranji Trophy game for Mumbai against Baroda.
He first drew attention when he hit experienced legspinner Pravin Tambe for five successive sixes in a Mumbai T20 League fixture in March this year. In the final of the DY Patil T20 tournament this year, he made a quickfire 34 and picked up 3 for 7 in a match-winning spell for BPCL.
Is he a product of school-cricket system in Mumbai?
While he helped Hansraj Morarji School win the Under-14 Giles Shield in Mumbai, he missed cricket in his late teens - 15 to 20 - because of personal reasons. When he returned, he still possessed the ability to hit big sixes, but recognition eluded him, until he shed 10 kilos to improve hit fitness and agility.
What has he done so far this year?
Dube proved he is not just a one-dimensional bowler, and exhibited a variety of slower variations with the ball to finish with 13 wickets in nine matches at an economy of just 4.53 during Mumbai's victorious march at the Vijay Hazare Trophy. With the bat too, he struck at 137.09 in the 50-over format. He has carried that form into the four-day format too; he is currently Mumbai's second-highest run-scorer with 489 runs and has 17 scalps, the most for Mumbai so far in a disappointing Ranji Trophy campaign. Making his debut last season, Dube scored 454 runs and picked 21 wickets, including two centuries and two five-fors.
What got the Mumbai selectors interested?
Dube plays for BPCL in Mumbai's corporate cricket circles and for DY Patil Sports Academy. In the final of the Young Comrades tournament last year against Fort Vijay Cricket Club, his four-wicket haul and a quickfire 61 not out helped his side win an improbable game. This helped him earn a sponsorship with a leading apparel brand. This performance, he says, was one of the key moments in his journey as an allrounder.
The story goes like this
A young Dube, all of 10, used to receive throwdowns in his residential colony from his house help, who would then have to fetch the ball back from different corners of the playing area. His cricketing ability as a kid attracted his father's attention.
What they said?
Milind Rege, the former Mumbai selection chief, said: "He reminds me of a young Yuvraj Singh. He hits the ball hard, is fearless and is an ideal No. 6. I've seen him decimate bowling attacks in club cricket. The one aspect that is work in progress is his fitness. With the ball, he is a wicket-to-wicket bowler, who has worked on his variety. He can work on his pace."