In pics: meet Bengaluru’s bat doctor who’s repaired the bat of Kohli, Dhoni and more
In a remote lane at the heart of Uttarahalli in a small hole-in-the-wall, the workshop is where you can find Ram Bhandari, who is often called the “bat doctor.” Ram repairs and modifies cricket bats using techniques he learned as a carpenter.
Several legends of the game such as Sachin Tendulkar, MS Dhoni and even international players like Ricky Ponting, are all clients of his.
“This year for the World Cup, I have worked on Indian team captain Virat’s (Kohli) bat. He prefers that the handle of the bat is oval rather than circular in shape. I also worked on Rohit Sharma’s bat for the World Cup,” he says.
Originally from Bihar, he moved to Bengaluru in 1979 after doing a series of odd jobs in a number of states.
“Once I came to Bangalore, I had to find a way to sustain myself. I got married and had kids also, whom I had to take care of. I used to make adjustments to my own bats earlier, so soon began doing that for local players and it worked out,” he says.
He was able to transfer his skills and knowledge from working as a carpenter onto cricket bats.
Rahul Dravid was one of this first clients after having been acquainted with him during the Ranji Trophy. Following this, several others soon approached him: Sachin Tendulkar, Kohli, Dhoni, Rohit Sharma among others.
In addition to having worked on bats of players during the Indian Premier League (IPL), he has also worked on bats for players from the Celebrity Cricket League (CCL). From being a fan of the sport to working with well-known players, Ram has perfected his craft to earn a respectable living for himself.