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IPL 2020: 'He's done everything to put his hand up and make an IPL debut,' says RCB head coach Simon Katich on Devdutt Padikkal

Devdutt Padikkal during an RCB training session
Devdutt Padikkal during an RCB training session
EXPERT COLUMNIST
Modified 26 Aug 2020, 15:08 IST
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Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) head coach Simon Katich is very excited at the prospect of young Karnataka opener Devdutt Padikkal pushing his case to make a debut in IPL 2020.

In a recent media interaction which also witnessed the presence of RCB's Director of Cricket Operations Mike Hesson, Katich shed light on the value that Devdutt Padikkal adds to the unit.

"The decision was made prior to his domestic season (to retain Devdutt Padikkal). As a young 20-year-old batsman, the fact that he's a left-hander as well, he's obviously going to be a favourite," the Australian said.

Katich further added that Devdutt Padikkal's terrific season for Karnataka across formats over the past year has helped the youngster grab the spotlight ahead of IPL 2020.

"When it comes to the balance of the batting order you do like to break up left-hand, right-hand batting combinations so I think he's done everything possible to put his hand up and potentially make his debut in the IPL," Katich said about the young southpaw.

Dedvutt Padikkal had a fantasic debut season for Karnataka in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, scoring 580 runs from 12 matches at an average of 64.44 and a strike rate of 175.75.

Also read: Devdutt Padikkal and his date with destiny in RCB's top order

The left-hander topped the batting charts in the Vijay Hazare Trophy as well, amassing 609 runs from 11 matches with two centuries and five half-centuries to his name.

However, with RCB having roped in the services of Australian star opener Aaron Finch for IPL 2020, there still remain a few questions about whether Devdutt Padikkal will indeed earn his spot at the top of the order.

Devdutt Padikkal has a bright future ahead of him - Simon Katich

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The RCB squad is currently undergoing a mandatory quarantine period in their hotel rooms, but with the players set to begin their three-week training camp in a few days time, Katich believes that Devdutt Padikkal will have the right platform to to showcase his potential.

"Obviously now it's upto him to put his best case forward in the camp, we'll have some practice matches where I'm sure he will get an opportunity to play. He's an exciting young talent," the RCB head coach said.

All of 20 years of age, Devdutt Padikkal's name has made the rounds with scores of RCB fans clamoring for his inclusion in the playing XI when the Virat Kohli-led side step onto the field for the first time in IPL 2020.

"He's done a little bit of work during this lockdown period as well with our sports psychologist and he's certainly got a bright future ahead of him - not just on the cricket field but also how he thinks about the game so far, from a mental skills point of view. It's great to have him in our squad and we're certainly excited by what he potentially could do," Katich added.

IPL 2020 will be Devdutt Padikkal's second edition with RCB, after he was benched for the whole of IPL 2019. While RCB are blessed with many options at the top of the order including the likes of Parthiv Patel, Josh Philippe and Finch, a good couple of weeks in the training camp could well land the Karnataka youngster his maiden IPL cap.

Published 26 Aug 2020, 15:08 IST
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