IPL 2020: ‘Any captain will say, ‘give me that bowler’’, Sunil Gavaskar names the bowler ‘all franchises want’
IPL 2020: “He picks up wickets, creates dot balls. He is on the target every single time,” Sunil Gavaskar said of the bowler.Updated: Oct 09, 2020, 13:32 IST
Contrary to the common belief that the IPL is a batsman’s game, the league has proven game-changers for bowlers. Remember the year 2017, when a young Jasprit Bumrah castled AB de Villiers and followed it with a wonderful season in 2017, paving the way for his in India debut? Well, that’s exactly the kind of thing we’re referring to.
The 2020 IPL has also seen some promising young bowlers rise to the occasion, with the likes of T Natarajan, Rahul Tewatia and Ravi Bishnoi making heads turn, but even the combined experience of these three bowlers is tough to match that of Rashid Khan’s. The Afghanistan spinner proved his value yet again on Thursday night, picking up 3/12 against Kings XI Punjab and puncturing their chase.
Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar spoke highly of Rashid, saying that kind of performance is exactly what every captain wants his bowler to delivery. Crediting Rashid for his show, Gavaskar reckons the leg-spinner is a rare oddity in world cricket and that’s what makes him perhaps the most sought-after bowler in the IPL.
“You ask all the captains of the franchises, which is the one bowler that they want in their team, I am pretty certain every one of them will say ‘give me Rashid’. I am pretty certain. There might be the odd bowler who might get offended but look at the way he goes about his job,” Sunil Gavaskar told Star Sports in a post-match show.
“He picks up wickets, creates dot balls. Look at the economy – 3 for 12 in 4 overs. Leg-spinners generally bowls a full toss, a short ball. He hardly ever does it. He is on the target every single time, he has got a nice, well-disguised googly which comes off the back of the hand. A lot of batsmen find it difficult to pick. That kind of bowling, that kind of control, any captain will say ‘give me that bowler’”
Rashid credited the SRH batsmen for putting up a good total, and giving the bowlers something to work with. “That’s what happens when you have a good total on the board, the batsmen have to go after you. But you also have to bowl your best deliveries and that’s what I was trying to do. It is a big loss for us to lose Mitch Marsh and Bhuvi. As a team we still have a good combination and the youngsters are taking the responsibility,” he said.
“We have the best bowling combination in the last 4-5 years. It was a simple plan for us, we had defended 160 on this ground, we thought 180-185 would be a good score on this wicket and anything over that we were happy. We spoke about enjoying bowling and keep working hard in the field, that is something we have seen as well from Priyam - the catch and run out - changed the game.”