Sunrisers Hyderabad's performance analyst Shrinivas Chandrashekaran has revealed how the Hyderabad-based franchise went big in the 2017 IPL auction to get hold of Afghanistan sensation Rashid Khan. Khan has since been one of the star players for Sunrisers Hyderabad since his IPL debut for the franchise in 2017, picking up 55 wickets in 46 games.
The Hyderabad based IPL franchise had an option of going for the experienced Imran Tahir, but they chose to go for Rashid Khan instead. The young leg-spinner had performed well in the 2016 T20 World Cup in India, and that is what prompted Sunrisers Hyderabad to pour INR 4 crores to avail his services.
"It was during the World T20 in 2016 that we first watched Rashid Khan closely. You could see that there was something different about him. He had a good game against England in Delhi. There were [good] performances during that World T20 and we kept following him," Shrinivas said during the chat show Homerun with AV with sports commentator Arun Venugopal on his YouTube channel Gethist Creative.
"Whatever games he was playing, he would run through oppositions. So the curiosity about him increased. The pace at which he bowled was a lot different to what a normal leggie would bowl, and the way he could finish games and his fielding was top class. There was a complete package there," Shrinivas further added.
How Mustafizur Rahman's performance inspired Sunrisers Hyderabad to go for Rashid Khan
Sunrisers Hyderabad won the IPL in 2016. One of the main reasons they were able to win their maiden title in the competition was the form of their Bangladesh pacer Mustafizur Rahman. Like Rashid Khan, Mustafizur Rahman was also an unknown commodity, and that is what helped him become an X factor for Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Similarly, although the experienced Imran Tahir was available in the 2017 IPL auction, Sunrisers Hyderabad decided to go for the unknown commodity that was Rashid Khan, and the 'gamble' paid off sensationally.
"Experience vs a young rookie – that was a call we had to take. But then we thought that in 2016 we had picked up Mustafizur Rahman and he turned out to be a sensation, so it kind of allowed us to give it a go with someone like Rashid, who is different. So we went ahead with those players and it worked wonders for us. Both have been an integral part of the franchise and have provided match-winning performances for us," Shrinivas said.
The 2020 edition of the IPL is set to be staged in UAE from September 19 to November 10 where Sunrisers Hyderabad's hopes will depend on the form of Rashid Khan.Published 04 Aug 2020, 21:45 IST