Navdeep Saini: The Next Big Thing In Indian Cricket: Last night’s game between Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore was an absolute belter as the two oppositions stood toe to toe with each other clawing their way until the very end. It needed a super over to separate these two opponents and Royal Challengers Bangalore came up trumps, thanks to an incredible over from Navdeep Saini.
Saini started hogging the limelight right since the first game of the tournament when he left Hyderabad crippled with figures of 2 for 25. He rocked the Orange Army with a brutal pace that saw him clocking at an extraordinary figure of 150 plus.
Last night when the momentum very well shifted in favor of Mumbai as Pollard and Ishan Kishan wreaked havoc in the middle, Kohli trusted Saini with the most important penultimate over of the game. With 32 needed from the last 2 overs and with Pollard in brutal swing, it never looked like RCB’s game. This is when Navdeep Saini stepped up. The first ball was a disaster as two runs were scored without a ball being bowled owing to a single of a wide.
That is exactly when Navdeep Saini started showcasing some extraordinary class with the ball. He bowled a yorker on the off-stump that saw a giant swing from Kishan only to send the ball to midwicket for a single. The young Indian fast bowler exploited Pollard’s weakness of short balls as he bowled the next delivery short and wide which compelled Pollard to improvise that could only win them a single.
The next delivery from Navdeep Saini was another yorker on the middle stump, thereby pinning down Kishan to the crease that could only get them a single. The next ball left Pollard frustrated as another low full toss was bowled to the Caribbean monster that was slower than expected and it was cut at long-off for a single. An incredible over until that point of time to say the least got Bangalore roaring again. The final ball was absolutely bonkers as he bowled a full-toss that was traded for a sixer to the stands.
As the game finished with a stalemate, Virat Kohli once again trusted Navdeep Saini with the role of spearheading RCB’s bowling unit. The super over from Saini was a treat to the eyes, as he bowled six clever deliveries to the Mumbai batsmen and that too to a set Pollard who could only collect one boundary in that over, owing to a ghastly misfield. He even removed Pollard in the final over with a brilliant short ball that saw the West Indian holing out to the fielder in the deep.
The lanky fast bowler commanded the ailing RCB bowling until with some brilliant belters that clocked around 148 plus kays. He mixed the pace wonderfully and generated some substantial yorkers at the right time to orchestrate RCB’s defense of the monumental total which otherwise seemed within the reach of Mumbai Indians.
India would reap handsome dividends from this youngster as he has already managed to scalp 13 wickets from the 9 T20 internationals that he has been a part of which has also seen him being extremely miserly, chronicling figures of 7.15 runs per over. To add to his arsenal he is also an incredible batsman down the lower order.
The reason that Navdeep Saini can be a priceless gem in the Indian ranks as that would take the pressure off Jasprit Bumrah in the final overs. It has been ages since India has seen a proper pace troika like that of Australia at the moment. With Mohammad Shami and Jasprit Bumrah rattling the deck with some brutal fast bowling and some wily swing, Saini will be the fastest of the lot, thereby honing the Indian bowling unit until that final line.