Mumbai: Speedster Umran Malik mesmerised most batters in the IPL 2022 session with his sheer speed along with immaculate control. He was pressing hard to make it to the national team. Umran has been able to impress the national selectors with his remarkable bowling in this IPL season.
He earned a maiden call-up to the Indian cricket team in the upcoming five-match T20I series against South Africa, starting on June 9 in Delhi.
Malik, 22, the son of a fruit seller in Jammu, has been consistently hitting the deck at over 150kmph. He played a key role in some of the victories for SRH in this season’s IPL. Cricket pundits call him a rare talent. South African great Dale Steyn, who was his mentor at SRH, hailed him as a superstar of the future.
.Former Team India coach Ravi Shastri recently said he should be given a central contract by the Indian cricket board (BCCI) right away and carefully nurtured, while former India off-spinner Harbhajan Singh believes he needs to be in the squad for the T20 World Cup in Australia later this year.
“Woh apni pace se wahan logon ke sar phad dega (He’ll break batsmen’s heads there with his pace),” Singh quipped at an event recently.
His tearaway speed can be matched by Shoaib Akhtar and Brett Lee. Malik proved his worth in this year’s IPL. He captured 21 wickets in 13 games, with a fifer as well. His best bowling performance in IPL 2022 was 5/25. He delivered several breathtaking spells for SRH.
In recent years, cricket has gained a lot of popularity in J&K despite the adverse situation in the valley. In 2017, Parvez Rasool was the last J&K player to represent India in one ODI and an equal number of T-20Is. No J&K player has ever represented India in red ball cricket.
Along with Umran, another left-arm seamer, Arshdeep Singh of Punjab Kings, also earned a place in Team India for the first time. The quickie was excellent in death overs in the IPL, and his accurate yorkers were difficult for opposing batters to handle.
Both the newcomers have to perform at an international level, which is a different platform from the IPL. International cricket needs quality and both have to face different challenges in every encounter. Youngsters, Umran and Arshdeep, are itching to perform at international level to cement their place in Team India.