Washington Sundar’s father M.Sundar has revealed that Washington was named after an ex-army officer, PD Washington, who helped him during his early days as a cricketer. M. Sundar played first division cricket for the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) in the 90's.
Washington Sundar has become a household name in India thanks to his exploits in the ongoing IPL 2017. And his stock has only risen after his last performance in the playoff game against the Mumbai Indians on Tuesday. However, Washington’s name still continues to intrigue the Indian audience as much as his bowling. And now the mystery behind Washington’s name has been revealed by none other than his father.
"I am a Hindu and come from a very humble family. Two streets away from my home in Triplicane (Chennai) lived an ex-army man called PD Washington," M.Sundar was quoted by the Hindu.
"Washington was extremely fond of cricket and would come to watch us play at the Marina ground (in Chennai). He took a liking for my game. I was poor and he would buy uniform for me, pay my school fee, get me books, take me to the ground in his cycle and constantly encourage me."
"To me he (PD Washington) was everything. He was the happiest man when I made it to the Ranji Trophy probables."
M. Sundar went on to play in the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association's (TNCA) first division league. However, unfortunately for Sundar senior, P.D. Washington passed away just before the birth of his son in 1999. And Sundar decided to name his son after the then deceased Washington as a mark of gratitude for all he had done for him.
"My wife had a difficult delivery. But the baby survived. As per the Hindu custom, I whispered a God's name, 'Srinivasan' in his ear. But I decided to name him Washington in memory of the man who had done so much for me. Had I had a second son, I would have called him Washington Jr," Sundar said.
Given that Washington was named as a last minute replacement in the Pune side for Ravichandran Ashwin, he has certainly made the most of his opportunity. Finally, both P.D. Washington and M.Sundar must be extremely proud of Washington Sundar’s exploits in IPL 2017 so far. Not only has the leg-spinner picked up 8 wickets in the tournament thus far, his three-wicket haul in the playoff game against Mumbai was a major part of the reason why Pune find themselves in Sunday’s final.