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VVS Laxman backs Manish Pandey for a good showing in IPL 2020

Manish Pandey
Manish Pandey
Modified 09 Sep 2020, 16:41 IST

Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) mentor VVS Laxman feels Indian batsman Manish Pandey’s good show on the New Zealand tour earlier this year will help him perform well in the upcoming Indian Premier League (IPL), which starts on September 19th.

“Manish Pandey must have grown in confidence after his performance for India, even at No. 6 Vijay Shankar will be motivated to perform. We have overseas players like (Mohammad) Nabi, (Mitchell) Marsh and Fabian Allen, who if they play to their potential can be unstoppable,” he said.

India won the T20I series against New Zealand 5-0 and, Manish Pandey, playing a finisher’s role, remained not out in four of those matches. The only exception was the game in which he didn’t need to bat as India won by seven wickets.

Even though Pandey scored just 89 series in the series, he was highly instrumental in each of the matches. In fact, it was his 36-ball 50 in the fourth T20I that helped India reach 165 for eight from a precarious position of 88 for six. He even scored 42 off 48 balls in the only ODI he played on the tour.

Empty stadiums won’t dilute the intensity of IPL: VVS Laxman

SRH's only IPL title came in 2016, they finished fourth last season. Image Credits: SRH (Twitter)

Another aspect the IPL players have to deal with in this season is playing behind closed doors. It will be a completely different challenge for the SRH players, who are otherwise always in the middle of the vibrant ‘Orange Army’ when they play their IPL matches at Hyderabad. Laxman, however, begs to differ.

“Most of the top players are internally driven. It’s true that energy from the stands will be missing and top players feed off that energy. But the reason they are great players is because they adapt quickly to conditions...IPL is the most high profile tournament and I don’t think the quality or intensity will be diluted because the stadium is empty,” Laxman, who has scored 11,119 runs in 134 Tests and 86 ODIs, added.

IPL 2020 will be played behind closed doors across three venues – Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah – in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The Hyderabad franchise will begin their campaign on September 21st versus the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).

Published 09 Sep 2020, 16:41 IST
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