Impressed by his raw pace, former India skipper Dilip Vengsarkar feels rookie pacer Umran Malik should board the flight to Australia for this year’s T20 World Cup to be held in Australia. Umran is currently a part of the Indian team for the two T20s against Ireland starting on June 26. (More Cricket News)
“I hope so because he (Umran) is a very exciting talent. He did well in the IPL and he deserves a chance as he looked the best bowler in the format. I hope he is on the plane and I am sure he will do well if given an opportunity,” Vengsarkar told reporters on Saturday.
The T20 World Cup is set to be played in Australia in October-November later this year. “He (Umran) is young and raring to go. You must give an opportunity to someone who is in form. He is young, keen to play and hungry for success,” added the former national chairman of selectors.
Umran had picked up 22 wickets in 14 games for Sunrisers Hyderabad in IPL 2022 but it is his ability to bowl consistently at 95 miles per hour that have caught the imagination of all. He was subsequently rewarded for his consistency by earning his maiden national call-up for the T20 series against South Africa but did not get a game.
However, it remains to be seen whether Umran gets a game against Ireland. Vengsarkar's 1983 World Cup-winning teammate and former India all-rounder Roger Binny also felt that Umran should be given a chance straightaway in all three formats.
“There is definitely going to be a bigger bunch of fast bowlers coming through now. And he (Umran) should be given a chance straight away because he has proved that he is quick and if you saw him bowl some of the yorkers in the IPL that was brute force,” Binny said.
“Well, I am not surprised that somebody, who is coming to the scene (and bowling over 150 kmph), because we have a lot of people (bowling) around the 140-142 area for the last six-seven years and especially in the IPL. I am not surprised (by the sheer pace of Umran),” added Binny.
Vengsarkar also hailed Hardik Pandya for his strong comeback. “The way he (Hardik) came back from injury is great. He must have worked very hard on his fitness. He did very well in the IPL and as a captain he did well. (He is a) very fine all-rounder,” added the former cricketer.
“He led from the front. He guided the team in his first major tournament as captain (of Gujarat Titans). An all-rounder plays an important role in any team,” he said.
Hardik led the Gujarat Titans to their maiden IPL title and played a key role by amassing 487 runs and picking up eight wickets. He then carried on his form into the T20 series against South Africa.