After missing out on the T20 World Cup 2022, the fiery Indian pacer from Jammu & Kashmir, Umran Malik will be charged up to prove his mettle and will hope to cement his place in India’s scheme of things by virtue of his performances during India’s tour of New Zealand. The 22-year-old is likely to play all three T20Is against New Zealand and most importantly, the conditions in New Zealand will suit the speedster.
Umran Malik is someone who can consistently clock 150 kmph and is something that can trouble the Kiwi batters in their backyard. Former Indian fast bowler, Zaheer Khan thus reckons that Umran can be extremely instrumental in New Zealand and more so, because of his pace. The 44-year-old came in support of Umran ahead of the series and mentioned how the opportunity can help the bowler get much-needed exposure in international cricket.
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During a chat with a journalist organized by Prime Video, Zaheer Khan said, “The variety in your pace attack is a must and you have seen teams following that kind of pattern. You need a left-arm bowler, you need someone who can swing the ball, you need someone who is an out-and-out fast bowler.”
He further added, “If everything is in one package, then even better but if not, you would like to use the variety in your attack in the bowling line-up and use different conditions well. Umran has been a very exciting talent and this kind of exposure is definitely going to help him, it is about how he takes things forward if he wants to grab the spot consistently.”
Former India Head Coach, Ravi Shastri also reminded us how India missed the trick of not including Umran Malik in the T20 World Cup squad. Shastri opined that there is no substitute for genuine pace and thus questioned team India’s selection process.
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Elaborating the same, Ravi Shastri said, “He (Umran) is one of the fastest bowlers in India and you saw what happened in the World Cup where genuine pace rattled opposition, whether it was Haris Rauf, Naseem Shah, and Anrich Nortje. So, there is no substitute for genuine pace. Even if you are defending small totals. So this is an opportunity for Umran, hopefully, he will learn from this exposure.”