Updated: May 7, 2019 5:13:16 pm
The Indian Premier League has introduced us to plenty of new Indian talent over the years, with players like Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik Pandya, and Krunal Pandya among those who owe their international careers to performances in the league.
The current season of the IPL was no different, and there were a few youngsters who stood out despite their teams not having lived up to expectations.
Navdeep Saini (Royal Challengers Bangalore)
Every time an Indian fast bowler clocks over 140 km per hour, it’s a matter of excitement. Navdeep Saini stood out this season after bowling with raw pace. The fast bowler found himself in the middle of a bidding war between his former franchise Delhi Capitals (DC) and RCB in the auction, before being signed by RCB for a whopping Rs 3 crore.
While other RCB bowlers struggle to keep the run rate down, Saini bowled with an economy rate of 8.27. The 26-year-old took 11 wickets in 13 IPL matches and his performance of 1/24 against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) was one of his best performances of the season. The penultimate over he bowled in the match showed that he has the ability to pin down even the best in business.
The fast bowler is in Indian team’s reserves for the upcoming World Cup 2019, and is one of the two fast bowlers who will be travelling with the squad to bowl to batsmen in nets. The Delhi speedster also performed consistently during the 2017-18 Ranji season with 34 wickets in 8 games.
Riyan Parag (Rajasthan Royals)
Riyan Parag is one of the youngest debutants in the IPL and was obtained by RR in the auction for his base price of Rs 20 lakhs. Parag has displayed exemplary levels of composure for a 17-year-old. The youngster scored 160 runs for his team in 7 matches. The statistics might not seem extraordinary but three of his innings have made a mark in this IPL.
His 31-ball 47 against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in a run chase stood out. His maiden IPL half-century, which made him the youngest player to ever score one in the tournament, came at a time when the RR batting lineup was collapsing like a pack of cards.
At the age of 17, he is already an Under-19 World Cup winner and the only notable player from Assam after Abu Nechim. He is handy with the ball too, being able to bowl both off spin and leg spin.
Prithvi Raj Yarra (Kolkata Knight Riders)
It would be unfair to judge Prithvi Raj due to his economy rate of 11.40 in the two matches he played for KKR. The left-arm fast bowler showed flashes of brilliance in the clash against Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH).
The 21-year-old bowled his heart out against the most successful and destructive openers of the season, David Warner and Jonny Bairstow. He created wicket-taking opportunities upfront but was unlucky not to get wickets due to some sloppy fielding. He might have bowled in just two matches but the delivery to dismiss Warner showed that the youngster is capable of becoming a frontline bowler in future.
The youngster has been impressive in domestic cricket too taking 21 wickets at an average of 24.38 for Andhra Pradesh in the 2017-18 Ranji Trophy season.
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