Shahrukh Khan Reminds Anil Kumble Of Kieron Pollard In IPL 2021
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Shahrukh Khan Of PBKS Reminds Anil Kumble Of Kieron Pollard

Shahrukh Khan, Punjab Kings’ new recruit has managed to impress the team’s head and director of cricket operations, Anil Kumble.

The former Indian captain heaped massive praise on the youngster and even drew parallels with Kieron Pollard.

Shahrukh Khan, Anil Kumble And Kieron Pollard Image Courtesy: AFP | Getty Images
Shahrukh Khan, Anil Kumble, And Kieron Pollard Image Courtesy: AFP | Getty Images

Anil Kumble Says Shahrukh Khan Reminds Him Of Kieron Pollard

Anil Kumble recollected his experience of bowling to Kieron Pollard in the Mumbai Indians (MI) nets and said that Shahrukh Khan brings a similar skillset to the table.

Anil Kumble said in this regard: “Yeah, he reminds me a bit of Pollard actually. When I was with Mumbai Indians, Pollard in the nets was dangerous. I used to bowl a bit (in the nets), and the first thing I used to tell him was don’t hit straight. Here I’m not even trying. I’m a lot older now, and the body doesn’t take the bowling anymore. So, I’m not going to bowl at Shahrukh, for sure”.

File image of KXIP coach Anil Kumble(Kings Xi Punjab/Twitter)
File image of KXIP coach Anil Kumble(Kings Xi Punjab/Twitter)

Shahrukh Khan has played 31 T20 matches thus far, scoring 293 runs at a strike rate of 131.39. With his batting exploits in the Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL), the 25-year-old sparked an intense bidding war for his services in the IPL auction in February.

Kieron Pollard’s IPL Record: After his heroics in the CLT20 for Trinidad and Tobago, Kieron Pollard was picked up by Mumbai Indians for the 2010 season and has remained with them ever since. He has played many memorable knocks for them and has bowled several worthy spells. In 164 IPL games, he has scored 3023 runs averaging nearly 30 and has picked 60 scalps.

Shahrukh Khan Surprised At Bidding War At IPL 2021 Auction

The Delhi Capitals, the Royals Challengers Bangalore, and the Punjab Kings bid for him, with Preity Zinta’s franchise acquiring Shahrukh Khan for Rs 5.25 crore.

Named after a popular Bollywood star, Shahrukh Khan is a right-hand batsman and occasional right-arm off-spinner. At 6 feet 6 inches, the 25-year-old showed plenty of promise in the 2018 edition of the Tamil Nadu Premier League tournament, where he honed his skills and compiled 325 runs in nine games for a new franchise – the Kovai Kings and it paved the way for his comeback into the Tamil Nadu side.

He made his List A debut on 27 February 2014, for Tamil Nadu in the 2013–14 Vijay Hazare Trophy. He made his first-class debut for Tamil Nadu in the 2018–19 Ranji Trophy on 6 December 2018. He was part of the Tamil Nadu side that went unbeaten all season on their way to winning the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy in 2021.

Shahrukh Khan (right) was sold to Punjab Kings in IPL 2021 auction(PTI)
Shahrukh Khan (right) was sold to Punjab Kings in IPL 2021 auction(PTI)

“Being amongst such stalwarts of cricket, it feels amazing to be here and the inputs have been great. I have been having a lot of conversations with everyone around here, getting to learn a lot as well,” Shahrukh Khan has said about his Punjab Kings experience.

Shahrukh Khan said that he was pleasantly surprised that there was a bidding war for his services in the auction.

“The auction started at around 3 PM I guess, and we were practising at the Holkar Stadium, obviously I had to bat and bowl a bit. So I told our physio that ‘please let me know when my name comes up. I’ll take a break and come and see the auction.’ Luckily my name didn’t come up, and it didn’t bother my batting much. Right after we finished practice and we hopped onto the bus, I still remember sitting on the first seat and my name came up. My heart started pumping, but I didn’t expect it to rise as much as it did,” Shahrukh Khan added.

Punjab Kings went in with the biggest purse for the IPL 2021 auction after having released several of their big names, including Glenn Maxwell. As expected, the Priety Zinta co-owned franchise spent big at the IPL auction, bringing in overseas stars like Jhye Richardson, Dawid Malan, Riley Meredith, and Moises Henriques.

Punjab Kings also signed up Tamil Nadu big-hitter Shah Rukh Khan, seasoned all-rounder Jalaj Saxena among others. After missing the play-offs berth at IPL 2020 despite a strong late surge, KL Rahul-led Punjab Kings will be keen on making it to the play-offs stage in IPL 2021.

IPL 2021: Punjab Kings squad

Retained players: KL Rahul, Arshdeep Singh, Chris Gayle, Darshan Nalkande, Harpreet Brar, Mandeep Singh, Mayank Agarwal, Mohd. Shami, M Ashwin, Nicholas Pooran, Sarfaraz Khan, Deepak Hooda, Ishan Porel, Ravi Bishnoi, Chris Jordan, Prabhsimran Singh.

Players bought at Auction: Jhye Richardson (Rs 14 crore), Shahrukh Khan (Rs 5.25 crore), Dawid Malan (Rs 1.5 crore), Riley Meredith (Rs 8 crore), Moises Henriques (Rs 4.20 crore), Jalaj Saxena (Rs 30 lakhs), Utkarsh Singh (Rs 20 lakhs), Fabian Allen (Rs 75 lakh), Saurabh Kumar (Rs 20 lakh).