The reputation of leg-spin sensation from Afghanistan Rashid Khan took quite a beating in his last two Indian Premier League (IPL ) games. The Sunrisers Hyderabad spin spearhead was taken to the cleaners, first by the Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) and then Chennai Super Kings (CSK).
He conceded 55 runs against Punjab, including the four consecutive sixes which Chris Gayle hit off his bowling. His fortune did not change against Super Kings too as he ended up conceding 49 runs.
The struggle made many feel that the teams had found a way out to counter Rashid’s leg-spin and googly in general. However, the teenager bounced back in style on Tuesday to prove his detractors wrong.
Against defending champions Mumbai Indians (MI), he bagged the Man of the Match award for his stunning figures of 4-1-11-2. His scalps were Krunal Pandya and Keiron Pollard which derailed Mumbai’s chase.
Rashid’s spell was crucial in Hyderabad’s stunning 31-run win. The Kane Williamson-led side was defending only 118 but they did it quite comfortably in the end, bowling out Mumbai for a paltry total of 87.
Speaking after the game, Rashid spoke about how he bounced back from the mauling he received in his last two appearances while representing the Orange Army.
“Till you don’t get hit, you don’t learn. It happens, it’s a part of the game, I’m learning lot of things from it after giving 55 and 48 runs in the last two games,” he said.
“It wasn’t expected from me but for my future, it was good for me because I learnt from that,” added Rashid.
“What I should have done that time, that’s what coaches told me…everyone, especially Muttiah Murali sir, Tom Moody and VVS Laxman. We had a good chat before this game and the only thing was to be positive. Some bad days happen in a player’s career and you learn from that, try not to repeat from that. That’s what I was doing today, got the basics right and you can see the result,” Rashid remarked.
Rashid also lauded skipper Williamson. The leader kept his team motivated and the players repaid his faith by defending the low score.
“I think he’s a great fighter. He kept the team together while defending 120 and was like, ‘be positive and if we didn’t do it, how can they do it’,” Rashid said.
“He kept everyone’s morale positive and everyone was believing that we just need to be positive and just do our 100 percent in fielding and bowling. Whatever the result is, just do 100 percent and don’t let yourself down. It’s still a good total on this wicket. So I think he’s amazing and he’s a wonderful leader, he did it for NZ as well and for the first time here in IPL, the way he did it was unbelievable. And how he batted was amazing,” he added.
The win ended Sunrisers’ two-match losing streak. They are now third in the table after winning four of their first six games.