Nearly 10 Days of IPL 10 have gone, 17 matches have been played. The tournament has been exciting from the start. There has been no team which has remained unbeaten. Some performances in this short period have been quite good. To start off, Gautam Gambhir has looked in excellent touch, Sanju Samson scored the first century of the IPL, Chris Lynn had a blast at the start then injured himself, AB De Villiers and Virat Kohli have just come back from injury and scored half centuries in their first match, but it has been the performance of uncapped rookies who belong to Mumbai Indians that stood out: Nitish Rana and Krunal Pandya. Let’s talk about them.
The uncapped Delhi boy Nitish Rana has looked better than his contemporaries and senior players. He has played very well under pressure, sees off his team in tight matches and has won matches for Mumbai Indians. But who is Nitish Rana? An aggressive left-handed batsman and bowls part-time off spin. He was hailed as special boy by Gautam Gambhir two years ago in 2015-2016 where he was the stand out performer for Delhi in a torrid campaign for them. Things change they say and he was left out of the Delhi squad in the recent Ranji season. He under performed in recent Syed Musthaq Ali T20 Trophy. Things were not going well from him before IPL.
With IPL the fortune has just changed. He has played vital role for the franchise. All hail him as the next ‘Big Thing from Delhi’. He is currently the Orange Cap holder with 193 runs in 5 Matches with a Strike Rate of 133.10. He has already scored 2 Fifties. His Innings against Kolkata Knight Riders was crucial for Mumbai Indians win. Rana carried on his form against Sun Risers Hyderabad and Gujarat Lions and guided them to victory. Nitish Rana surely will be the batsman to watch out for in the upcoming matches.
The older brother of Hardik Pandya to start off his introduction which all are aware of by now. He drew attention to his all round performance for Mumbai Indians last season. The left-handed Baroda all-rounder is known for his hard hitting. He had a great Syed Ali tournament with the bat, scoring over 150 runs in three matches. He had a decent outing in the Duleep Trophy as well.
This IPL, his role has changed slightly. His role is more like a finisher and bowl couple of overs like Hardik Pandya. In the match against KKR he finished off the match for MI and his performance against RCB may well go down as one of his best. Mumbai struggling at 35/5 needing 107 of 14 more overs. He, along with another KP- Kieron Pollard, built a crucial partnership and defeated RCB. Krunal made 37* and had bowling figures of 1/21 which tells the valuable all round performance. He has been the nemesis of AB De Villiers getting him out in all the 3 encounters between them. Its still 5 matches, lots of matches to come in IPL.
The way Nitish Rana and Krunal Pandya have played, they are players to look out for this season.