Devdutt Padikkal became the second-youngest player to score a half-century on Indian Premier League (IPL) debut when he reached the milestone in 36 balls during the match between Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in Dubai on Monday.
Carrying his rich form from the last domestic season to the IPL, Padikkal began with aplomb cracking back to back boundaries of Hyderabad seamer Sandeep Sharma. It was clean hitting from the youngster as he chipped down the track and then hit a blistering off-drive, reminding fans and pundits of a vintage Yuvraj Singh. This was also the shot that set him in motion.
The left-hander continued to display his wide array of shots through the offside. With the gift of a wonderful ability to connect and clear the infield, Paddikal showed brilliant technique to keep his head still while playing the attacking the shots, ensuring false shots are at a minimum.
Devdutt Padikkal is looking wonderful so far. He’s been hitting very square of the wicket, as shown by only 7 of his 43 runs coming in ‘the V’ – RCB are in a strong position. #IPL2020 #SRHvRCB pic.twitter.com/VHSCBmnVvO
— The CricViz Analyst (@cricvizanalyst) September 21, 2020
Vijay Shankar picked up his wicket in the 10th over but that was not before the southpaw had scored a scintillating 56 of 42 balls at a staggering strike rate of 133.33 with eight fours to his name.
Have RCB unearthed a gem?
Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) may have counted their stars after picking the Karnataka batsman for just Rs 20 lakh in the last year’s auction.
Padikkal was in exceptional form in the 50-over and 20-over format. He scored 580 runs in 12 games for Karnataka at an average of 64.44, which included five half-centuries and one century in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy.
The left-hander was among the three batsmen to score a century in the domestic T20 tournament and was touted to be the first choice opener for RCB.
Padikkal 👏 👏 👏 #RCBVsSRH
— Ashwin 🇮🇳 (@ashwinravi99) September 21, 2020
The 19-year-old doesn’t just anchor the innings, but is known for playing the big shots as well with a T20 strike rate of 175.75. The southpaw has hit 33 sixes in 12 T20 games.
In his T20 career to date, Devdutt Padikkal scores at over 10rpo against both pace and spin bowling.
Solves RCB’s Powerplay woes
Last season, Bangalore were playing a high-risk game in the Powerplay, scoring heavily in the first six overs (going at 8.5rpo) but frequent losing wickets which in turn hurt them badly in the middle overs.
Padikkal seems like he is already settling in the role of an opener and it is no wonder that there is plenty of excitement surrounding the young Karnataka batsman.
50 on debut! 👏
Great to see such gems coming out from this stage
— VINOD KAMBLI (@vinodkambli349) September 21, 2020
Devdutt Padikkal debut match-
Fifty on the First-class debut: 77 vs Maharashtra 2018
Fifty on List-A debut: 58 vs Jharkhand 2019
Fifty on T20 debut: 53* vs Uttarakhand 2019
Fifty on IPL debut: 51* vs SRH 2020
De Villiers dazzles
AB De Villiers rolled back the years with a beautiful exhibition of strokes to smash a quickfire fifty off just 30 balls. He also reached the milestone of 200 Sixes in the IPL en route to his fifty.
Incidentally, 2.6 percent of all sixes in IPL history have been hit by AB de Villiers (according to CricViz).
— KINGS (@TRENDSKIN) September 21, 2020
— Md Zeeshan (@Iluvshaan) September 21, 2020
Padikkal (56), de Villiers (51) guided Royal Challengers Bangalore to 163/5 against Sunrisers Hyderabad.
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