Paddy Upton Rahul Dravid: I want to get you coffee… when the new 23-year-old Rahul Dravid called in the hotel room


New Delhi: The Indian cricket team has once again appointed Paddy Upton as the mental health coach. He will join the support staff team led by Rahul Dravid. Prior to this, Paddy, who was also part of Team India’s support staff between 2008 and 2011, is considered close to Rahul Dravid. Apart from Indian cricket, both have also worked together for Rajasthan Royals in IPL. Now Upton has shared an old anecdote.

In 1996, when Rahul Dravid was debuting for Team India, Paddy Upton was the fitness trainer of the South African team. Talking about his first meeting with Dravid, Paddy Upton says, ‘Then India was on a tour of South Africa, he called in my hotel room and said, I want to get you a cup of coffee. I have a few questions for you and the first time I met a young Dravid, he had many questions about getting fit, managing his body, taking himself to a new level of fitness.

This was the time when there was no such thing as a fitness trainer in world cricket. South Africa was the first team. He then told an interesting and similar story about New Zealand captain Kane Williamson, which reminded him of Dravid years later. Williamson made his Test debut in 2010 during New Zealand’s tour of India, where he scored a century in the first of three matches. After the match was over, Upton recalled a surprising scene and narrated an incident similar to what Dravid had experienced 14 years earlier.

“And a few years later, when I was with the Indian team and Kane Williamson came on his first tour, I saw him talking to Dravid, Laxman and Tendulkar after a Test match, and that evening he gave me my Called into the room and asked if I could have a cup of coffee with you tomorrow. And like Dravid, a young Kane Williamson came to me with some really good questions about how he can take his game forward.

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