IPL 2020: Mumbai Indians Rope In Zahoor Khan As Net Bowler
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IPL 2020: Mumbai Indians Rope In Zahoor Khan As Net Bowler

Zahoor Khan, UAE pacer missed out on being picked by any team in the Indian Premier League (IPL) auction going into season 13 but was roped in by Mumbai Indians (MI) to bowl at the nets and help the cricketers prepare better for conditions on offer in the country.

Zahoor Khan has featured in 17 ODIs and 22 T20Is where he picked up 31 and 27 wickets respectively at an average of 22.67 and 18.62. He had also picked up a five-wicket haul in ODI.

Zahoor Khan
Zahoor Khan. Photo Credit: Twitter.

Zahoor Khan Was Even Asked By Jasprit Bumrah On Managing Slower Ball With Dew Around In UAE

Speaking to ANI, Zahoor Khan who has finished his quarantine period and was part of the nets before MI’s game against RCB on Monday said that discussing his slower ball technique with Jasprit Bumrah has been his biggest takeaway from the journey so far.

“I am still pinching myself. Bumrah asked me how do I manage to bowl the slower ball with so much dew around. I discussed my technique with him. Imagine one of the best bowlers in the world asking me about adapting to the conditions in UAE. The feeling is yet to sink in as I never expected such a thing to happen.”

Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah
Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah. Photo Credit: BCCI/IPL.

“In fact, bowling coach Shane Bond and head coach Mahela Jayawardene too liked what they saw when I hit the nets on the eve of the RCB game. Bond was telling me that I should share the secret of my slower delivery with him. These are the little joys that can never be replaced. After I shared my technique, he turned to our head coach and applauded me,” the bowler smiled.

Zahoor Khan might be bowling in the nets for MI in the IPL, but he has already shown his skills in the T10 league in Abu Dhabi and the T20 league in Canada and is definitely not a newcomer to reckon with.

Zahoor Khan Had Shared Nets With Jasprit Bumrah And Virat Kohli In 2014 Too

Interestingly, this isn’t the first time that pacer Zahoor Khan has shared the nets with Jasprit Bumrah. He did it even in 2014 when the Indian pacer was just taking steps towards stardom.

“We were at the team dinner after I finished my quarantine and I reminded Bumrah that I had bowled with him at the MI nets in 2014. Would you believe he remembered it and that brought a smile to my face,” he said.

Talking of 2014, Zahoor Khan remembers how Virat Kohli showed him that the India skipper is a class apart from the rest and bowling against him even in the nets can be a challenge as he has the ability to smash balls at will.

“I had also bowled at the RCB nets in 2014 and had a fun battle with Virat Kohli. The way he smashed me all over the place, I cannot start telling you. But as a student of the game, I realized why he was the best in the business,” he revealed.

Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma
Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma (Image Credit: BCCI/IPL)

MI skipper Rohit Sharma helped Zahoor Khan to be comfortable and enjoy himself. Zahoor Khan says the nature of the Mumbai captain impressed him the most.

“First day I walk into the training ground, he is in the dressing room. So, he sees me and says feel comfortable and enjoy yourself. I show some confidence and ask him if I can sit next to him. He said the whole dressing room was mine and I could sit anywhere I want. This is what makes you stand out as a human being.

“Similarly, Hardik Bhai (Pandya) came up to me and checked on me. It has been a wonderful start to the journey and I hope to absorb as much as I can in this period from some of the best in the business,” he signed off.

RCB won the match against MI in the Super Over after scores were tied at 201 in regular 20 overs.

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