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IPL: How Virender Sehwag teased Manan Vohra for not finishing SRH vs KXIP match

Manan Vohra says he had promised his mentor Virender Sehwag that he would bat long during Kings XI Punjab’s IPL 2017 clash against Sunrisers Hyderabad. Sehwag, however, expected him to take the team to finish line

ipl 2017 Updated: Apr 18, 2017 23:21 IST
Shalini Gupta
Shalini Gupta
IPL 2017,Virender Sehwag,Manan Vohra
Manan Vohar (R), who scored a superb 95 during Kings XI Punjab’s IPL 2017 match against Sunrisers Hyderabad, had promised Virender Sehwag (L), that he would bat for long. [File photo](Kings XI Punjab/Twitter)

Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) leg-spinner Rashid Khan has been an enigma in the ongoing IPL, destroying many top batsman with well-disguised googlies. But when he came on to bowl against Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) on Monday night, opener Manan Vohra read his googly well and hit a slog sweep over the mid-wicket region for a six. (IPL 2017 FULL COVERAGE)

That made the SRH captain David Warner express his admiration for the 23-year-old batsman. He could not stop himself from saying, “That’s a top shot man.” (IPL 2017 SCHEDULE)

The shot was a precursor of things to come. Manan went on to smash a 50-ball 95 and almost got KXIP to the finish line. However, they fell short by just five runs.

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Speaking to Hindustan Times from Hyderabad, Manan said, “David Warner was kind enough to say encouraging words during the match. I promised Viru paaji that I will stay in the middle for 12-14 overs. I am happy to have done that and would like to make it a habit. I wish the team had won too. Viru paaji said later, “ab khada tha toe khatam karke aata (You should have hit the winning runs too after having stayed there for so long).”

Despite the result, Manan was showered with praise. Yuvraj Singh, Ravi Shastri, Harbhajan Singh, Tom Moody and Mandeep Singh all took to Twitter to praise Manan’s counter-attacking knock.

This must have been a déjà vu moment for Manan, who rose to fame during his debut season in IPL back in 2013 and grabbed attention. However, the following seasons did not pan out the way Manan would have wanted.

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He did make a solid pair with Virender Sehwag at the top two seasons ago but with Murali Vijay also coming into the picture, Manan could not cement his place in the KXIP team.

“Whatever has happened is past. Viru paaji is a mentor to me. He keeps telling me to go out there and play my natural game and express myself. His guidance helped me succeed on Monday night. I need the momentum to be going like this,” said Manan, who stood like a rock as Hashim Amla, Glenn Maxwell, David Miller, Eoin Morgan, Wriddhiman Saha and Axar Patel walked back to the pavilion at regular intervals.

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Yuvraj Singh has been a big influence as he grew up in Chandigarh learning the ropes under Yuvraj’s father Yograj Singh, a former India cricketer. Even as the Punjab Cricket Association selectors questioned his place in the team during the last Ranji Trophy season, captain Yuvraj backed him.

Manan hit 673 runs (one run short of Yuvraj’s total) in the season, including a double ton against Baroda.

“Yuvraj’s life is an inspiration. While I was batting against his team, Yuvi paaji was constantly saying funny things (laughs). Later, he came to me and gave a pat on my back. He is my big brother.”

First Published: Apr 18, 2017 18:52 IST