|Born||16 July 1936|
|Batting style||Right-hand bat|
|Bowling style||Right-arm medium fast|
|Test debut||19 March 1965 v New Zealand|
|Last Test||7 March 1968 v New Zealand|
Venkataraman Subramanya pronunciation (help·info) (born 16 July 1936, Bangalore, Karnataka) is a former Indian cricketer who played in nine Tests from 1965 to 1968. He was an aggressive middle order batsman, who captained Mysore for some years, and a useful leg-spin bowler. He later emigrated to Australia. Subramanya was affectionately called as 'Kunju (small) Mani'.
Subramanya grew up in a joint family in Malleswaram. His father was a civil engineer who built a lot of houses in Bangalore. His uncle was the chief engineer when the KRS Dam was built. They had a house with a huge compound where all the cousins could play cricket. Two of Subramanya's brothers, V. Ramdas and V. Krishnaprasad also played for Mysore.
Subramanya studied at the Malleswaram High School and later Basappa Intermediate College before graduating from Central College. He turned out for Malleswaram Gymkhana. Unlike other cities at that time, Bombay and Madras, Bangalore did not have a major tournament. The only exposure that the youngsters got was from radio. Subramanya learnt cricket by listening to commentary and imbibing some lessons.
"A.S. Krishnaswamy was the captain. He had already returned to Mysore city and was out of touch with the Bangaloreans. I felt frustrated on my debut. ASK did not know the players and what they did. In my debut match I went in at number 10. ASK did not know who I was and also did not bother to find out."
Mysore made the final that year, but they had a new skipper. Kennimbeli Vasudevamurthy was made captain of the team and he promoted Subramanya higher up in the order. The game against Bombay took place at the Brabourne Stadium. Subramanya excelled with a fine century. Despite his efforts, Mysore lost the game by an innings and 22 runs.
Subramanya built on his success in his debut season and scored more runs in the following seasons. He was appointed as captain of the Mysore team in 1963. In his first season as captain, he led his team to a semi-final showdown against Bombay at Central College Ground in Bangalore. His excessive shielding of his tail end partners cost him his century as he was dismissed for 99 by Subhash Gupte.
Subramanya played with moderate success in the few Tests that he played between 1965 and 1968. Against West Indies at Madras in 1966-67, he hit a breezy 61, treating Hall and Griffith with disdain. He did little of note on the tour of England in 1967, but he touched form late and played in two of the three Tests. Pressed to open the attack because of injuries to the regular new ball bowlers, he bowled Geoff Boycott in the third Test at Edgbaston. On the tour of Australia and New Zealand in 1967-68, he did little of note, save for a fighting 75 in a losing cause in the first Test at Adelaide.
Subramanya later returned to play for the Mysore team. His greatest contribution to Karnataka Cricket was as a leader. Under his leadership, talented cricketers like B. S. Chandrasekhar, Gundappa Vishwanath, EAS Prasanna, Syed Kirmani made their debuts and were given extended runs. He inculcated a sense of team spirit that lacking earlier. He broke down club cricket loyalties and inspired the cricketers to play for Mysore.
Subramanya was considered ahead of his time. At a time, when fielding drills were non-existent, he introduced physical training in the form of jogging, stretching, cross-training and intense fielding practices. He fought with the administrators for better practice facilities at the RSI grounds in Bangalore. He insisted on a proper diet for the cricketers.
Since the game was not paying well, Subramanya decided to emigrate to Australia.
Subramanya's contribution to Karnataka cricket was felt after he left the game. Brijesh Patel believed that Mysore could have won the Ranji Trophy much earlier if Subramanya had stayed back to guide the team. Gundappa Vishwanath said - "The 1974 team that won the Ranji Trophy was Mani's (Subramanya) team. He built the side and brought it to championship-winning shape."
Subramanya is settled in Sydney. He works for Law Society of New South Wales.
- Vedam Jaishankar, Casting a Spell, The story of Karnataka Cricket, UBS Publishers, 2005
- Scorecard of Hyderabad vs Karnataka
- Scorecard of the 1959/60 Ranji Trophy Final
- Scorecard of Bombay vs Karnataka
- Scorecard of North Zone vs South Zone
- Scorecard of India vs West Indies
- Scorecard of India vs Australia