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Harshal Patel

Glenn Maxwell
Glenn Maxwell (Image Credit: Twitter)
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Glenn Maxwell Won’t Be Assigned A Role Of RCB Skipper In IPL 2022 Because He Is A Free-Flowing Cricketer: Irfan Pathan

Irfan Pathan feels that RCB might not find a captain from among the three players they retain for the 15th season and would rather have to look for a skipper from the IPL auction pool.

One of the biggest challenges for Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the impending Indian Premier League (IPL) auction for the 2022 edition will be finding a new skipper as regular skipper Virat Kohli stepped down from his role at the end of IPL 2021.

Irfan Pathan. (Photo Source: AFP)
Irfan Pathan. (Photo Source: AFP)

Irfan Pathan: Glenn Maxwell Would Be Retained, But He Won’t Be Assigned Skipper Because He Is A Free-Flowing Cricketer

Former Indian all-rounder Irfan Pathan feels that Royal Challengers Bangalore might not find a captain from among the three players they will retain for the 15th season.

Talking about RCB’s possible retention for IPL 2022 during Lunch on day 4 of the ongoing first Test between India and New Zealand, Irfan Pathan felt that the franchise should retain Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell, who was their top scorer last season, but added that he shouldn’t be given the responsibility to captain the side.

Glenn Maxwell
Glenn Maxwell (Image Credit: Twitter)

“I think someone from the auction. Because whatever the 4 players are in my head, Virat is obviously not going to captain he has announced that, Glenn Maxwell is there, but you do not want to give him the captaincy because he his kind of a free-flowing cricketer and you do not want to give him that kind of responsibility. You want him to play freely,” he explained.

With AB de Villiers retiring from all formats of the game, many expect RCB to retain Australia’s Glenn Maxwell, who was one of their top performers last season. He scored 513 runs, his second-highest run-tally in an IPL season after 2012, at 42.75 and at a strike rate of 144.10 with six half-centuries.

Glenn Maxwell had a poor IPL outing in 2020 (for KXIP at UAE), managing just 108 runs in 13 matches averaging a pathetic 15.42, but managed to earn big bucks when RCB signed him for a whopping INR 14.25 crore.

Irfan Pathan Leaves Out IPL 2021 Purple Cap Winner Harshal

Irfan Pathan also felt that RCB should retain Yuzvendra Chahal and pacer Mohammed Siraj.

“The third is Chahal, who is a bowler. The fourth one is a topic of discussion but I will go with Siraj. So you might to find leadership in that but you might find it in the auction. They need to work hard on that part,” he added.

RCB's Harshal Patel celebrates his hat-trick with Mohammad Siraj (BCCI/IPL Photo)
RCB’s Harshal Patel celebrates his hat-trick with Mohammad Siraj (BCCI/IPL Photo)

The 4 picks imply that former pacer Irfan Pathan has left out Harshal Patel, who picked 32 wickets last season to grab the Purple Cap, but Irfan Pathan explained that Mohammed Siraj is a “more complete package” and is a “more long-term option”.

“A lot of people will be thinking about Harshal Patel, he was the Purple Cap winner, but when you look at the complete package in Mohammed Siraj who can bowl with the new ball and deliver outstanding yorkers, he has got pace as well. So you might be looking at a more long-term option. I certainly think it’s Siraj,” he explained. 

Irfan Pathan was also full of praise for leg spinner Yuzvendra Chahal and opined that RCB shouldn’t let go of a bowler like him.

“In Chinnaswamy, you need a spinner who bowls with a big heart. And Chahal has got a big heart. He takes wicket and knows the pitch in and out. Not many spinners come to Chinnaswamy and takes that kind of wicket what Chahal has given. You do not want to lose a bowler like him.”

He picked up as many as 32 wickets in 15 games, making him the highest Indian wicket-taker in a single season and joint-most with Dwayne Bravo. Mohammed Siraj who has picked 50 scalps in as many IPL matches, picked up 11 scalps in 15 appearances averaging 32.09 in IPL 2021, but RCB lost the Eliminator to runners-up KKR despite the two pacers’ excellent performances.

Yuzvendra Chahal picked only four wickets in seven games in the India leg of the 2021 Indian Premier League, at an economy rate of 8.26, which saw him fall out of contention for the race to the T20 World Cup squad, to Rahul Chahar, who snared 11 wickets in as many games at an economy rate of 7.21.

However, the RCB leg spinner made an impressive comeback in the second leg, picking 14 wickets in eight matches at an economy rate of 7.06.

Glenn Maxwell
Glenn Maxwell (Image Credit: Twitter)
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Aakash Chopra Doesn’t Have 100% Confidence In Glenn Maxwell And Feels RCB Won’t Retain Him In IPL 2022

Aakash Chopra, former Indian opener turned commentator, on Tuesday placed his predictions for the four players Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) might retain ahead of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2022) auction.

Aakash Chopra excluded two of the franchise’s IPL 2021 stars in naming four Indians that he feels are most likely to be retained for the next IPL 2022. Talking about the retention list on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra opined that RCB will retain Virat Kohli, Yuzvendra Chahal, Mohammed Siraj, and Devdutt Padikkal.

Yuzvendra Chahal of Royal Challengers Bangalore celebrates a wicket with skipper Virat Kohli. Sportzpics
Yuzvendra Chahal of Royal Challengers Bangalore celebrates a wicket with skipper Virat Kohli. Sportzpics

Aakash Chopra: It Will Be A Toss Up Between Harshal Patel And Mohammed Siraj, But RCB May Feel To Retain The Latter

He excluded Harshal Patel, who was the Purple Cap winner in the last IPL 2021, a season that helped the 30-year-old break into the Indian T20I team for the first time. He picked up as many as 32 wickets in 15 games, making him the highest Indian wicket-taker in a single season and joint-most with Dwayne Bravo.

Mohammed Siraj who has picked 50 scalps in as many IPL matches, picked up 11 scalps in 15 appearances averaging 32.09 in IPL 2021, but RCB lost the Eliminator to runners-up KKR despite the two pacers’ excellent performances.

“Virat Kohli and Yuzi Chahal will be my first two choices. If I have two more in my hand, I will try for Mohammed Siraj and Devdutt Paddikal. These will be my four. I will think about these four for sure. In fact, I can think about Harshal as well – Siraj/Harshal,” he said.

RCB's Harshal Patel celebrates his hat-trick with Mohammad Siraj (BCCI/IPL Photo)
RCB’s Harshal Patel celebrates his hat-trick with Mohammad Siraj (BCCI/IPL Photo)

Adding more to his final choice, Aakash Chopra explained that if RCB pick Mohammed Siraj, they will be looking at a long-term prospect rather than Harshal Patel, which is more of a two-season vision.

“It might be a toss-up between Harshal Patel and Mohammed Siraj. You can look at Siraj with a slightly more long-term vision. Harshal, the way he is developing, the last 12 months have been extremely good, so maybe Harshal Patel. But then you are looking at three seasons, not just one or two,” he explained.

Harshal Patel was able to bag 32 wickets in just 15 IPL 2021 games at an average of 14.34 economy of 8.14 and strike rate of 10.56. His best bowling figure was 5/27. Harshal Patel won the Gamechanger of the season, Most Valuable Player of the season, and Purple Cap award during his sensational run.

Aakash Chopra Doesn’t Want To Retain Glenn Maxwell For Not Having 100% Confidence In His Consistency

With AB de Villiers retiring from all formats of the game, many expect RCB to retain Australia’s Glenn Maxwell, who was one of their top performers last season. He scored 513 runs, his second-highest run-tally in an IPL season after 2012, at 42.75 and at a strike rate of 144.10 with six half-centuries. But Aakash Chopra admitted that he is worried about his consistency and would rather not take chances.

Glenn Maxwell had a poor IPL outing in 2020 (for KXIP at UAE), managing just 108 runs in 13 matches averaging a pathetic 15.42, but managed to earn big bucks when RCB signed him for a whopping INR 14.25 crore.

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)

“You might be thinking about Glenn Maxwell, why am I not wanting to retain him. It is because I don’t have hundred percent confidence. He is doing very well but I don’t know if he will continue doing that. So, I don’t want to take that chance,” he explained.

According to the retention rules, each IPL team will be allowed to retain up to four players from their IPL 2021 squads. This means a franchise can include up to three Indian players or a maximum of two overseas players, whereas the two new franchises – Ahmedabad and Lucknow – will be allowed to make their picks of three players from the pool of un-retained players ahead of the auction.

Salman Butt. Image-Twitter
Salman Butt. Image-Twitter
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Salman Butt Hails Rahul Dravid’s Approach As Team India’s Head Coach

Salman Butt, the former tainted ex-skipper of Pakistan, was absolutely impressed with Rahul Dravid’s approach in his maiden stint as India’s head coach, saying that it only highlights his humility.

India registered a whitewash against 2021 T20 World Cup finalists New Zealand, winning the series 3-0 in convincing fashion, but newly-appointed head coach Rahul Dravid cautioned the team, advising them to be more “realistic” with India eyeing the big prize a year from now – the 2022 T20 World Cup in Australia.

India Won Bilateral T20I Series 3-0 Against NZ (TWITTER/BCCI)
India Won Bilateral T20I Series 3-0 Against NZ (TWITTER/BCCI)

Rahul Dravid: Indian Cricketers Have To Keep Feet Grounded And Be Realistic Keeping In Mind 2022 T20I World Cup

Rohit Sharma and Axar Patel shone for the hosts in the inconsequential 3rd T20I as India thrashed New Zealand in 3rd T20I to sweep the series. India beat New Zealand by 73 runs in the final T20I to win the three-match series 3-0. Skipper Rohit Sharma produced sublime knocks scoring 56 off 31 balls in India’s 184/7.
His imperious form was on full display as he led the way with five fours and three sixes while the likes of Ishan Kishan, Shreyas Iyer, and Venkatesh Iyer all got starts but couldn’t quite capitalize.
Rohit Sharma smashed 159 runs at an excellent strike rate of 154.36 in the three T20Is against New Zealand. He was duly chosen as the Player of the Series for his exploits with the bat. Rohit Sharma’s sequence of scores in the last six T20 Internationals is 74, 30, 56, 48, 55, and 56, and captaincy hasn’t changed his style of play one bit.

“We have to keep our feet on the ground and be realistic, especially with bigger things down the line in the next 12 months,” Dravid told host broadcaster Star Sports after the third T20I in Kolkata.

“It’s not easy for New Zealand to play a World Cup final, turn up three days later, and play three games in six days. We knew it was never going to be easy on them.”

Rahul Dravid Photo Credit: PTI
Rahul Dravid Photo Credit: PTI

New Zealand began the series three nights after their World Cup final loss to Australia in Dubai and played the three matches in the space of five days in the absence of Kane Williamson, and Kyle Jamieson, while a few others were rotated to keep the workload in balance with the two-Test series coming up.

India, too missed the services of Virat Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, and Ravindra Jadeja for the T20I series and rather focussed on testing their bench strength to keep options in hand for the Australia T20 World Cup. Salman Butt admitted these points but pointed out that it was a lot to ask from New Zealand to mentally prepare for an international series in such a short space.

Salman Butt: The Actual Target Is The Next 10 Months Is Winning The 2022 T20I World Cup In Australia

The veteran cricketer Salman Butt hence felt that Rahul Dravid kept these points in mind while making that statement, saying that ultimately it is the world title that matters.

“It only reflects utmost clarity and humility. And very realistic and professional talk because India did win but the other team just came from a World Cup final and hence it is not easy to mentally prepare for another international series so fast. They (New Zealand) also lost the toss. When you play so much international cricket, there is a difference in intensity as well.

“So he did take all these factors into account when making that statement. India tested their bench strength, there was a new captain, new coach and they managed to win. But he is keeping them in line for the hunt.

“The actual target is the next target which will be in the next 10 months. So this is absolutely the correct and needed approach,” Salman Butt said on his YouTube channel.

Controversial Pakistan batsman Salman Butt
Controversial Pakistan batsman Salman Butt (File Photo | AFP)

Rahul Dravid praised the newest acquisitions who got the opportunity to play in the bilateral series. Harshal Patel, who made his debut in the second game, was adjudged the Man of the Match in the same game for picking 2 vital scalps.

Axar Patel was the Player of the Match with his economical three-wicket haul in the final tie. Venkatesh Iyer, too finally got his opportunity to bowl in the series and even picked his maiden international wicket.

“It’s been great to see the younger guys come through, we’ve given the opportunity to some of the guys who haven’t played too much cricket in the last few months with the seniors taking rest.

“The greatest takeaway for us is to see the skills available to us. We need to continue developing those skills,” Dravid further said.

Analyzing Rahul Dravid’s first assignment as the head coach of Team India, ex-Pakistan captain Salman Butt showered praise on the batting great, saying he has nailed his approach so far.

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)
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India’s Middle-Lower Order Woes Not Addressed In Three-Match New Zealand T20I Series, Says Aakash Chopra

Aakash Chopra has highlighted that Team India’s lower-middle order concerns were not addressed in the T20I series against New Zealand. He pointed out that none of Rishabh Pant, Shreyas Iyer, and Venkatesh Iyer covered themselves in glory.

None of the Indian middle-order batters played a substantial knock in the three T20Is against the Black Caps. While they did not have too much of an opportunity in the first two matches, they threw away their wickets in last night’s encounter.

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Aakash Chopra Unhappy With India’s Middle Order

While reflecting on the India-New Zealand series in a video shared on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra wasn’t too happy with the hosts’ middle order.

He elaborated: “The middle-lower order is still a concern because Rishabh Pant hasn’t really batted the way we wanted him to bat. He hasn’t batted the way he can bat, you expect more from him.”

Rishabh Pant (Photo Source: Disney+Hotstar VIP)
Rishabh Pant (Photo Source: Disney+Hotstar VIP)

The former India cricketer added that Rishabh Pant hadn’t enjoyed the same success in the shortest format of the game as he has done in Tests.

Aakash Chopra explained: “The runs come from his bat, he hits sixes as well but I feel he hasn’t yet fully cracked the T20 code, which is a bit of a disappointment. He is absolutely sensational in Tests, it is the format he has cracked easily but he is still figuring out his ways in the other formats.”

Although Rishabh Pant gave the finishing touches to Team India’s run chases in the first two T20Is, he didn’t look too convincing in the middle. The dashing wicket-keeper batter was dismissed for just four runs in last night’s encounter as he holed out in the deep while going for a big shot.

Before the bilateral T20I series against New Zealand, Rishabh Pant registered scores of 39, 12, and 27* during India’s T20 World Cup 2021 campaign, where they were ousted from the group stage itself after heavy defeats against Pakistan and New Zealand.

Rishabh Pant wasn’t able to set the recent T20I series on fire with the bat, as he scored 33 runs (4, 12*, 17*) in the three matches against New Zealand while batting at No. 4 and 5. Rishabh Pant is sometimes accused of throwing his wicket away despite being set often. He has amassed 623 runs in 41 T20Is averaging 23.07 with only 2 fifties with a highest score of 65*.

Aakash Chopra: Shreyas Iyer Played A Bad Shot To Be Dismissed

Aakash Chopra was also critical of Shreyas Iyer’s shot selection in last night’s encounter. Shreyas Iyer didn’t bat at his ideal position throughout the series and managed to score only 30 runs in 2 innings averaging 15.

Suryakumar Yadav scored 63 runs averaging 21 in 3 games. Rishabh Pant also failed to deliver on a couple of occasions scoring 33 runs averaging 33 in 3 games. Venkatesh Iyer was tested as the finisher, but he failed to live up to the hype on his debut series, managing 36 runs averaging 18 in 3 games.

“The number at which Shreyas Iyer was made to bat, the attempt was to get him to do something different at No. 5. He had an opportunity as well in the last match, played a bad shot to get out.”

Shreyas Iyer
Shreyas Iyer – Getty Images

The reputed commentator concluded by stating that it is too early to pass a judgment on Venkatesh Iyer, who was playing his debut T20I series as well.

Aakash Chopra said: “There were so many overs left, Venkatesh Iyer had got out in the previous over. He [Shreyas] is also not your finisher. Venkatesh Iyer has played, hit one or two sixes as well, but it is too soon to form an opinion on him being your long-term solution.”

Shreyas Iyer and Venkatesh Iyer got off to starts in yesterday’s match but got out in the twenties. However, Harshal Patel and Deepak Chahar played some enterprising shots thereafter to help India go past the 180-run mark, resulting in a convincing win for India.

Irfan Pathan. (Photo Source: AFP)
Irfan Pathan. (Photo Source: AFP)
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Irfan Pathan Pointed Out Middle Order Batting An Area Of Concern Despite T20I Series Win Over New Zealand

Irfan Pathan, despite India’s 3-0 clean sweep in the recently-concluded India-New Zealand T20I series, pointed out one area of concern.

Former Indian all-rounder Irfan Pathan feels that the team’s middle-order needs to take more responsibility despite the top-order’s impressive returns with the bat, pointing it out as an area of concern India needs to look at. Despite the issue, India went on to beat New Zealand by a margin of 73 runs, after batting first, to register a 3-0 clean sweep over New Zealand at the iconic Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Sunday.

Irfan Pathan. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Irfan Pathan. (Photo Source: Twitter)

 

Irfan Pathan: Rishabh Pant Has To Keep Working On His Batting, Especially Against Spinners

After India’s blistering powerplay show where the openers Ishan Kishan and Rohit Sharma stitched a 69-run stand in 38 deliveries, the middle order batsmen(No.4 to 7) scored only 51 runs off 45 balls, laced with three boundaries and one six.

In conversation with Star Sports at the end of India’s innings, Irfan Pathan felt that Rishabh Pant, who scored 4 off 6, should have taken more time to settle in and advised him to get better at playing spin. Irfan Pathan also did not read much into Suryakumar Yadav’s four-ball duck, explaining that he is a “high-risk, high reward player”.

Rishabh Pant (Photo Source: Disney+Hotstar VIP)
Rishabh Pant (Photo Source: Disney+Hotstar VIP)

“Look in terms of Rishabh’s batting, the kind of shot he played, he needs to keep working on his batting specially against spinners. Since maybe 2020, he has gone out to spinners playing the slog sweep about six or seven times which is quite high. He needs to just get better at it. He could have taken a bit more time as well. And look when I talk about Suryakumar Yadav, I always believe he’s a fantastic player, but he’s a high risk, high reward kind of player, ” said Irfan Pathan.

Despite a poor show from the middle order, two breathtaking and unlikely cameos powered India to a challenging 184 for seven in 20 overs. Coming in at No. 8, Harshal Patel smashed two boundaries and a six to score 18 off 11, while No.9 Deepak Chahar, reminded fans of his Sri Lanka heroics, hit eight-ball 21, comprising as many boundaries and sixes, as India hit 44 runs in the final four overs.

Axar Patel And Rohit Sharma’s Heroics Saw India Win Inconsequential T20I By 73 Runs And Series 3-0

A dominant bowling performance helped India restrict New Zealand to just 111 runs as the hosts registered a massive 73-run win to register a 3-0 whitewash. The Indian skipper Rohit Sharma first made a statement scoring 56 off 31 balls in India’s 184 for 7 and then made some immaculate captaincy calls which witnessed New Zealand’s surrender for a paltry 111 runs in 17.2 overs.

India's Axar Patel and Rohit Sharma celebrates the dismissal during the Third T20 International match between India and New Zealand, at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Sunday. (ANI)
India’s Axar Patel and Rohit Sharma celebrate the dismissal during the Third T20 International match between India and New Zealand, at Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Sunday. (ANI)

It was a second back-to-back bilateral T20I series triumph with a clean sweep for India after beating the Black Caps 5-0 in their own den in 2020. Axar Patel (3/9) bowled accurately and also got one to turn as his three wickets in Powerplay literally ended New Zealand’s resistance, and the rest was a mere formality.

Opener Ishan Kishan (29 off 21 balls), middle-order batsmen Shreyas Iyer (25 off 20 balls), and Venkatesh Iyer (20 off 15 balls) all got starts but couldn’t convert it into a big score. Rohit Sharma’s sequence of scores in the last six T20 Internationals is 74, 30, 56, 48, 55, and 56, and captaincy hasn’t changed his style of play one bit.

AB de Villiers [Image-IPLT20]
AB de Villiers [Image-IPLT20]
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Harshal Patel Pays Tribute To Retired AB de Villiers

Harshal Patel paid tribute to his former Royal Challengers Bangalore and South Africa batting great AB de Villiers after the latter announced his retirement from all forms of the game on Friday.

India fast bowler Harshal Patel said that AB de Villiers, with whom he shared a dressing room this season at Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the Indian Premier League, told him how to reduce the number of big overs he tends to have. AB De Villiers retires as the sixth highest run-getter in the tournament and one of the two overseas players to scale the mountain of 5000 runs.

Harshal Patel
Harshal Patel (Image Credit: Twitter)

Harshal Patel Reckons Retired RCB’s AB De Villiers Had A Massive Impact As He Advised The Pacer How To Reduce Big Overs

AB De Villiers retired from all forms of cricket on Saturday, making the 2021 season of the IPL his last IPL, in which Harshal Patel equalled the record for most wickets in a single season.

“AB has had a massive impact in my career. I have always been a silent observer of him,” Harshal Patel said in a press conference after Saturday’s match.

“Just before the UAE leg (of the IPL) I had asked him how I can reduce my big overs. I have conceded even 30 runs in an over in the IPL and I wanted to avoid that. He told me to not change my tactics when the batsman hits me on my good deliveries,” said Harshal Patel.

AB de Villiers
AB de Villiers (Image Credit: Twitter)

“You have to force the batsman to hit your good deliveries instead of changing it as soon as you get hit because that is something that the batsman expects. That is something that stayed with me throughout the UAE leg of IPL and it will stay with me throughout my career, ” said Harshal Patel.

The 37-year-old had played in 184 IPL matches, firstly for Delhi Capitals (formerly Delhi Daredevils) for three seasons, followed by a successful decade with Bangalore, where he formed a formidable partnership with Virat Kohli. Overall, he scored 5162 runs at an average of 39.70 and strike rate of 151.68, including three centuries and 40 half-centuries while being a member of the RCB side, which entered the IPL playoffs five times.

Harshal Patel won the player of the match for his figures of 2/25 in the 2nd T20I vs Kiwis. Harshal Patel has just come off a season where he topped the wicket charts(winning Purple Cap for most-32 scalps) in IPL 2021 and won the Most Valuable Player award, then rocked up to his first international outing by becoming the eighth player to win the Player of the Match award on his T20I debut for India.

AB De Villiers Congratulated By Former RCB Skipper Virat Kohli

Earlier, AB De Villiers’s longtime RCB teammate and former captain Virat Kohli also paid tribute to AB De Villiers.

“To the best player of our times and the most inspirational person I’ve met, you can be very proud of what you’ve done and what you’ve given to RCB my brother. Our bond is beyond the game and will always be. This hurts my heart but I know you’ve made the best decision for yourself and your family as you’ve always done. I love you@ABdeVilliers17,” said Kohli.

AB de Villiers, who hangs up his boot as one of the greatest players in the shortest format of the game, hit 9424 runs in 340 matches in T20 cricket, having played franchise-based cricket across the globe. He had retired from international cricket in 2018 after scoring 1672 runs in 78 T20Is, 9577 runs in 228 ODI matches, and 8765 runs in 114 Tests.

Harshal Patel picked up the key wickets of Daryl Mitchell and Glenn Phillips BCCI.
Harshal Patel picked up the key wickets of Daryl Mitchell and Glenn Phillips BCCI.
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Harshal Patel Will Fight For The Death Bowling Spot With Veteran Jasprit Bumrah, Says Robin Uthappa

Robin Uthappa, the wicket-keeper batsman, praised RCB pacer IPL 2021 purple cap holder Harshal Patel’s performance on his debut for Team India against New Zealand in Ranchi. The seamer claimed figures of 2-25 and was one of the pick of the bowlers in his very first outing.

Robin Uthappa named Harshal Patel on par with Jasprit Bumrah when it came to bowling in the death overs. The seamer was given a specific role by the Royal Challengers Bangalore management as a death-over specialist. He did justice to the role by picking up 32 wickets in the campaign.

Harshal Patel
Harshal Patel (Image Credit: Twitter)

Robin Uthappa: Harshal Patel Will Fight For The Death Bowling Spot With Veteran Jasprit Bumrah; Daniel Vettori: India Will Be More Formidable With The New Duo

The Purple Cap holder in IPL 2021 was not considered for the T20 World Cup 2021. However, he managed to earn a maiden call-up to the national team, with primary seamers Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammad Shami being rested for the T20I series against New Zealand. An injury to Mohammad Siraj in the first T20I meant that he availed the opportunity to feature in blue.

Robin Uthappa said: “If you would consider just a death bowling spot, then Harshal Patel is right up there for me along with Bumrah. The kind of skills he possesses and the way he is executing those skills, not just possession of skills but the way you execute those skills also matter, especially under pressure. Incredible how he came back in his last over, that just shows he’s got the stuff.”

Robin Uthappa
Robin Uthappa (Image Credit: Twitter)

Daniel Vettori claimed that if a death bowling duo of Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel can be forged, then it could make Team India even more formidable. He believes this option will help the team plan out their bowling strategy over the course of the innings. Moreover, it will make things a lot easier with clear roles being assigned.

Vettori said: “The ability to set up your back overs is so important in T20 Cricket. If Harshal Patel has the skillset and we obviously know that Bumrah does, so that brings a whole new dynamic to how you map out your 20 overs. Bowlers can be more attacking in the powerplay because they know you have those overs locked away at the back end.”

He added: “There are very few bowlers who can do that, and if India have two of them in Bumrah and Harshal Patel that sets them up for being a formidable team.”

Harshal Patel’s spell helped India restrict New Zealand to 153-6. The Blackcaps were looking to score in excess of 180, based on the start they got, courtesy of their openers. However, the RCB seamer’s overs in the death bowlers played a vital hand and did not allow New Zealand to accelerate.

Robin Uthappa Concerned With Harshal Payel’s Tendency To Bowl Waist High No Balls

Robin Uthappa felt that Harshal Patel’s tendency to bowl waist-high no-balls was a slight concern and urged the pacer to work on it. However, Robin Uthappa added that such a delivery could prove costly in a high-pressure encounter. With Dew being a prominent presence right from the word go in Ranchi, Harshal Patel bowled a waist-high no-ball. But he made amends with a strong comeback on the resulting free hit.

“The waist-high no balls have been something we have noticed with him over the last 12 months or so and it is something he would want to work on and improve. Because in high-pressure games you don’t want to give away a ball like that.” Uthappa explained.

Ravindra Jadeja, CSK
Ravindra Jadeja. Image Credits: Twitter

Harshal Patel had bowled a waist-high no-ball in his infamous final over against CSK in the first leg of the IPL as well. The over eventually resulted in 37 runs, with Ravindra Jadeja scripting his name in history.

Harshal Patel can bowl from close to the stumps or wide of the crease, over and around the wicket. In his game-turning 4-0-25-2 in the second T20I against New Zealand, each of his two wickets was ratified only after the umpires checked for a back-foot no-ball – so wide of the crease was Harshal Patel going. Both times, he was completely safe.

Robin Uthappa
Robin Uthappa (Image Credit: Twitter)
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Robin Uthappa Surprised That Rohit Sharma Hasn’t Tried Venkatesh Iyer As Bowler In First 2 T20Is

Robin Uthappa has stated he is a bit surprised that newly-appointed skipper Rohit Sharma hasn’t tried out Venkatesh Iyer as a bowling option in the first two T20Is against New Zealand. However, he added that it is too early to form an opinion of Rohit Sharma’s captaincy as he has just begun his journey as a full-time leader in international cricket.

Venkatesh Iyer was brought in as a replacement for all-rounder Hardik Pandya, whose fitness woes hurt Team India’s T20 World Cup 2021 campaign. But the 26-year-old hasn’t bowled in the T20I series against New Zealand.

Team India’s new entrant Venkatesh Iyer. Pic: Getty Images
Team India’s new entrant Venkatesh Iyer. Pic: Getty Images

Robin Uthappa: Rohit Sharma Isn’t Thinking Of 6th Bowling Option

Robin Uthappa analyzed the decision following India’s seven-wicket triumph over the Kiwis in the second T20I in Ranchi. Robin Uthappa, who plays for CSK in IPL,  said that Rohit Sharma is perhaps thinking on the lines that he doesn’t need a sixth bowling option as of now.

Robin Uthappa elaborated: “It is a bit mysterious as to why Venkatesh Iyer isn’t bowling or isn’t being tried as the sixth bowler. Maybe Rohit feels he doesn’t need a sixth bowler and Venkatesh Iyer is playing purely as a batter.”

Robin Uthappa
Robin Uthappa (Image Credit: Twitter)

Robin Uthappa further pointed out that Rohit Sharma’s mindset as captain is something that will get clearer the more he leads the Indian team.

The 36-year-old explained: “We are very early into this understanding of who Rohit is as a captain. As time passes, we will get a better understanding of what he wants to achieve and want kind of a captain he is. We need to give these guys (Rohit and Rahul Dravid) a little bit of time to understand what their mindset is and how they are looking at taking things forward.”

Venkatesh Iyer was dismissed for 4 on his T20I debut. Promoted to No. 3 in Friday’s game, he returned unbeaten on 12 from 11 balls. Venkatesh Iyer, a sensation in the second leg of the IPL 2021 in the UAE, earned his maiden India call-up. Venkatesh Iyer scored 370 runs in 10 games at an average of 41.11 and a strike rate of 128.47, including four half-centuries. He finished as KKR’s fourth-highest run-scorer.

Daniel Vettori: Ravichandran Ashwin Is Going To Be Part Of T20I Team Going Forward

Former New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori backed Robin Uthappa over Rohit Sharma’s decision to not give the ball to Venkatesh Iyer. According to him, Rohit Sharma and head coach Rahul Dravid perhaps don’t want to experiment just for the sake of it.

Daniel Vettori stated: “This is about Rohit’s captaincy rather than the playing XI and finding the style that he wants to play. Rahul and Rohit don’t want to bowl Venkatesh Iyer because it might just be at a crucial time and he might go for 20 runs. They don’t want to put themselves in a position just for the sake of seeing a bowler.”

Ravichandran Ashwin of India. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
Ravichandran Ashwin of India. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Reviewing India’s performance, he added that Ravichandran Ashwin’s success on his comeback to the T20 squad has made life tougher for Yuzvendra Chahal. After being overlooked for the first two games, both of which India lost in the T20I World Cup, off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin was finally brought into the playing XI after a hiatus of 4 years in T20Is and was the standout spinner for Team India in the three matches he played in the Super 12 stage.

Daniel Vettori said: “What they (India) have found out is that Ashwin is going to be part of the T20 team going forward. With Ashwin bowling so well, it probably pushes Chahal to the background a little bit.”

Chasing 154, India cantered to victory in 17.2 overs, taking an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series. MOM debutant pacer Harshal Patel conceded just 25 in his four overs and took the wickets of Daryl Mitchell and Glenn Phillips, both caught in the deep.

The spin prodigy Ravichandran Ashwin was impressive in the UAE during the recently-concluded T20I World Cup, In the three outings, he scalped six wickets and maintained an economy of 5.25. The 35-year old made similar noteworthy outings in the opening two games against NZ, where he returned with figures 4-0-23-2 and 4-0-19-1.

Harshal Patel picked up the key wickets of Daryl Mitchell and Glenn Phillips BCCI.
Harshal Patel picked up the key wickets of Daryl Mitchell and Glenn Phillips BCCI.
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Harshal Patel Can Form A Formidable Partnership With Jasprit Bumrah: Daniel Vettori

Harshal Patel won player of the match for his figures of 2/25, besides giving away just 16 runs in his last two overs in the 17th and 19th and taking the wicket of the dangerous Glenn Phillips in that period as India beat New Zealand by seven wickets in the second T20I.

India can become a formidable T20 unit if Harshal Patel is able to form a partnership with Jasprit Bumrah, former New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori has said. Harshal Patel won player of the match on his international debut, giving away just 16 runs in his last two overs, which put the breaks on the New Zealand innings.

Harshal Patel ended the match with figures of 2/25.
Harshal Patel ended the match with figures of 2/25. (AP Photo)

Harshal Patel’s Probable Ability To Set Up The Back Overs Brings A Whole New Dynamic To India’s Plan In Death Overs: Daniel Vettori

Man of the Match Harshal Patel’s slower ball, meanwhile, proved just as effective on international debut as it had done through his record-breaking 2021 IPL season where he took the maximum of 32 scalps, in conjunction with the long boundaries at the JSCA Stadium. He conceded just 25 in his four overs and took the wickets of Daryl Mitchell and Glenn Phillips, both caught in the deep.

“The ability to set up the back overs is so important in T20 cricket. If Harshal Patel has that ability, we obviously know that Bumrah does, it brings a whole new dynamic to how you map out your 20 overs,” Vettori said.

India's Jasprit Bumrah reacts during their ICC T20 World Cup match against Scotland in Dubai, UAE on November 5, 2021. | AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi
India’s Jasprit Bumrah reacts during their ICC T20 World Cup match against Scotland in Dubai, UAE, on November 5, 2021. | AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi

Debutant Harshal Patel, Deepak Chahar, and Bhuvneshwar Kumar combined to give just 25 runs in the last four overs of the New Zealand innings.

Jasprit Bumrah took 7 wickets with an economy of 5.08 in the Super 12s stage of the 2021 T20I World Cup tournament and was rested for the New Zealand T20I series. As a result, India will be without Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Rishabh Pant, Jasprit Bumrah, and Mohammed Shami when they take the field for the first Test against New Zealand in Kanpur from November 25 to 29. All five have presumably been rested.

Harshal Patel With Jasprit Bumrah In Death Overs Can Make India A Formidable T20 Team: Daniel Vettori

Harshal Patel has just come off a season where he topped the wicket charts(winning Purple Cap for most-32 scalps) in IPL 2021 and won the Most Valuable Player award, then rocked up to his first international outing by becoming the eighth player to win the Player of the Match award on his T20I debut for India.

“Your first six overs can be more attacking, you may have a specialist at the top because you know you have got those overs locked away at the back. There are not many bowlers who can do it and if India has two of Bumrah and Harshal, it sets them up for being such a formidable team,” said Vettori.

Daniel Vettori is New Zealand’s record wicket-taker.© Twitter
Daniel Vettori is New Zealand’s record wicket-taker.© Twitter

New Zealand ended their innings on 153/6. In reply, captain Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul’s opening partnership of 117 runs all but ended the match. While New Zealand skipper Tim Southee dismissed Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, and Suryakumar Yadav in consecutive overs, it was not enough to stop India from strolling to a seven-wicket win. However, it helped India seal a series win with one match left to play.

India 155 for 3 (Rahul 65, Rohit 55, Southee 3-16) beat New Zealand 153 for 6 (Phillips 34, Mitchell 31, Harshal 2-25, Ashwin 1-19) by seven wickets

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)
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Aakash Chopra Hails Ravichandran Ashwin And Axar Patel For Turning The Course Of The 2nd T20I

Aakash Chopra has highlighted that Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel’s exceptional spells turned the course of the second T20I against New Zealand in Team India’s favour.

Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel conceded just 45 runs in the combined eight overs they bowled and scalped two wickets in the process. Harshal Patel, who was duly chosen as the Player of the Match for his spell of 2/25 on his T20I debut, was the other standout Indian bowler. Harshal Patel picked the most wickets in IPL 2021-32 scalps.

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Aakash Chopra Praised Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel For Being Economical And Feels The Duo Won India The Match

While reviewing India’s bowling performance in a video shared on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra was effusive in his praise of Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel.  Cruising at 64 for one in the powerplay, the Kiwis suddenly hit a roadblock in the crucial middle overs and managed just 64 runs from 7 to 16 overs, with Ravichandran Ashwin (1/19) and Axar Patel (1/26) dominating the New Zealand batters in the dew-laden condition.

“Ashwin and Axar together took a couple of wickets, they were economical as well. In my opinion, both of them set the match, let’s be very honest. It is difficult to bowl spin with an extremely wet ball, both bowled exceedingly well and brought India back in the match. In fact, in my opinion they won India the match.”

Ravichandran Ashwin of India. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
Ravichandran Ashwin of India. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

The cricketer-turned-commentator pointed out that the spin duo had brought India back into the game after Martin Guptill and Daryl Mitchell had given the Kiwis a blazing start.

Aakash Chopra elaborated: “The start Guptill and Mitchell had given, they were smashing it from the first over. They started batting as though they are going to post 200-225 runs. They demolished the Indian bowlers in the first six overs.”

Martin Guptill and Daryl Mitchell smoked 48 runs for the first wicket before the former was dismissed on the second ball of the fifth over. Team India staged a comeback thereafter to restrict the Black Caps to a score of 153/6 in their allotted 20 overs.

Aakash Chopra Praised Harshal Patel For Bowling Difficult Overs But Was Surprised And Troubled That Deepak Chahar And Bhuvneshwar Kumar Were Expensive

Aakash Chopra highlighted the impact the spinners had post the powerplay overs.

Aakash Chopra explained: “When you score 64 runs in the powerplay and still do not post a total of 154, it means you didn’t even score 90 runs in the last 14 overs, it implies the spinners bowled amazingly well, whether it was Ashwin or Axar Patel.”

While also lauding Harshal Patel’s excellent spell on debut, the 44-year-old added that Deepak Chahar and Bhuvneshwar Kumar were found slightly wanting.

Harshal Patel picked up the key wickets of Daryl Mitchell and Glenn Phillips BCCI
Harshal Patel picked up the key wickets of Daryl Mitchell and Glenn Phillips BCCI.

Aakash Chopra observed: “After that, Harshal Patel. He bowled the difficult overs, I thought he was very very good. The surprising and troubling thing is that Deepak Chahar is not bowling well and in this match Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who was economical in the last match, his meter was also down.”

Deepak Chahar and Bhuvneshwar Kumar conceded a total of 81 runs in the eight overs they bowled. Team India might look to leave one of the two-seamers out and play Avesh Khan in the final T20I.

Man of the Match Harshal Patel’s slower ball, meanwhile, proved just as effective on international debut as it had done through his record-breaking 2021 IPL season where he took the maximum of 32 scalps, in conjunction with the long boundaries at the JSCA Stadium. He conceded just 25 in his four overs and took the wickets of Daryl Mitchell and Glenn Phillips, both caught in the deep.

Post-powerplay, New Zealand only scored 89 at 6.36 per over, with Daryl Mitchell, Mark Chapman, Tim Seifert, and James Neesham combining to score 36 off 51 after the fields spread out. That New Zealand ended up with 153 was largely down to the fast hands of Glenn Phillips, who hit three sixes in scoring 34 off 21.

India 155 for 3 (Rahul 65, Rohit 55, Southee 3-16) beat New Zealand 153 for 6 (Phillips 34, Mitchell 31, Harshal 2-25, Ashwin 1-19) by seven wickets

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