IPL 2024
‘For the last year and a half, I had been visualising my debut,’ says Mayank Yadav
By SMCS - Apr 2, 2024 12:00 pm
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Debutant Mayank Yadav made headlines with his stunning pace and stole the show in his IPL debut. He dismantled the Punjab Kings’ lineup by removing three wickets and helping his side win. However, he is considered as LSG’s x-factor with the ball this season as well.

Mayank Yadav
Mayank Yadav

“For the last year and a half, I had been visualising my debut,” said Mayank at the post-match press conference. “How my first ball would be and how I’d manage myself with the ball in front of such huge crowds. Everyone told me that there would be pressure and nervousness, but I honestly didn’t feel that. When my captain gave me the ball, I felt from inside that I belonged straightaway and there was a lot of confidence.”

While Yadav’s pace made the difference between victory and defeat, the pacer shared how the coaching staff had kept him in good spirits as well.

“JL (Justin Langer) and Morne (Morkel) never told me to work with anything. They know that my pace with hard lengths are good. They just told me to keep plans simple, bowl quick on hard lengths and attack the stumps as much as possible. My goal has always been to be consistent for the team and give less runs. This pace is a plus point for me, so I try to use it to the best of my ability,” he said.

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“I love speed, not just in cricket but also in general life. Be it plane or rocket or super bikes. So, I love speed. I had a side strain with rib fracture. It happened after the Vijay Hazare trophy. All the physios I tell me that these injuries are part and parcel of a fast bowler’s life. In the last 12-18 months, I’ve had two to three major injuries and I missed last IPL season due to injury itself. So, I’m focused on trying to avoid injuries as much as possible and manage my strength and conditioning,” he further added.

However, Yadav’s impressive debut also earned applause from the opposition camp with Punjab Kings Head of Cricket Development Sanjay Bangar praising his impactful performance.

Mayank Yadav

“I thought we had a great start, credit to Mayank Yadav who came in and broke the back of our batting. He bowled really fast, the lengths he bowled made it really difficult. He used the big side of the ground well. It’s something that put us back big time in the game. Livingstone’s injury also hampered us as he bats slightly higher up. So if you put all these things together, those are some of the things that meant that we ended short by 21 runs. Not everybody has the pace that he (Mayank) possesses. I’m really impressed, his action is pretty good good and he hits the lengths really well, has a wonderful line-up. A lovely talent and that’s what IPL showcases. It unearths talent and gives it a platform,” he added.

He stated, “There is a surprise element always (with bowlers like Mayank). Till you haven’t seen or played them, they can hurry you. When teams play against such bowlers, only then they will get an idea of the action and how the ball leaves the hand. No matter how much video footage you see, playing out there is different. Whether the bowlers can sustain this and add skills to their bow is what will define their future. He is a very talented bowler. If he can keep himself fit, then sky is the limit. He has a smooth action, he’s blessed with raw pace and he is a talent that I hope walks on the right path in the years to come. I also hope that the national selectors groom them because the NCA will then monitor his workload and ease him through tough stints.”

“He (Harshal) bowls the toughest overs if you see, like Mitchell Starc. He mostly bowls in the last five overs or after 10 overs. According to our team plan, he bowls three overs after the 10-over mark, so the challenge is really high. Then you have to think about about the wicket-taking opportunities that he creates, a few mishits that he forced ended up just short of the fielders. If those had gone to hand, things would have been different,” Mayank Yadav concluded.