Full name Ranganath Vinay Kumar
Born February 12, 1984, Davanagere, Karnataka
Major teams India, India A, Karnataka, Kochi Tuskers Kerala, Royal
Playing role Bowler
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm medium
Vinay Kumar is a bowler in the Venkatesh Prasad mould – relying more on outswingers, legcutters and accuracy, than on outright pace. After the retirement of former India players Dodda Ganesh and David Johnson, Vinay became a key member of the Karnataka pace attack. First picked for the Ranji side in 2004-05, he quickly established himself by taking more than 20 wickets in each of his first three seasons. He soon developed an inswinger as a variation to his stock ball, resulting in a superb 2007-08 season, in which he was the second-highest wicket-taker in the Ranji Trophy. That convinced the Royal Challengers Bangalore to give him a contract, and he has frequently filled their fifth bowler’s slot.
His finest domestic season so far was in 2009-10: capturing 46 wickets, besides mentoring his state’s two young fast bowlers, Abhimanyu Mithun and S Aravind, to lead Karnataka to the Ranji final for the first time in 11 years. Struggling to get national recognition despite several consistent performances, he worked on his batting in the hope of making the Indian team as an allrounder. The hard work eventually paid off – a successful start to the IPL won him a spot in the India squad for the World Twenty20 in 2010.