Thursday, 8 January 2009
Ravinder Singh Bopara, born 4 May 1985 in Forest Gate, Newham, London is an English cricketer who plays for Essex. Although originally a specialist batsman, he is now improving his medium-pace bowling and developing into an all-rounder, especially in the shorter form of the game. His agile fielding also adds to his worth. He is the second Sikh to play cricket for England, after Monty Panesar. Bopara made his first-class debut for Essex in May 2002. In 2003 and 2004, he played several matches for England Under-19s, including in the Under-19 Cricket World Cup 2004. In January 2007 Kevin Pietersen sustained a rib injury in England's first One Day International against Australia, keeping him out of the remainder of the series. Bopara was called up as his replacement, and made his ODI debut on 2 February. Later that month, he was named in the England squad for the 2007 Cricket World Cup, and he played his second ODI in England's second match of that tournament. In England's match against Sri Lanka, Bopara was named man of the match for his 52 off 53 balls, which brought England to within three runs of victory from a seemingly hopeless position. On 9 September 2008 Bopara was selected as one of the England 15-man squad for the inaugural Stanford Super Series in Antigua. The same day, Bopara was also handed an Increment Contract by the ECB. He will receive a one-off payment and will earn points for every Test and One-Day International he plays in over the next 12 months. Should Bopara reach a certain number of points, he will be awarded full Central Contract status. Ravi was awarded the Cricket Writers' Club Young Cricketers of the Year 2008.