Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) opener Venkatesh Iyer has become the cynosure of experts and fans after his two heroic performances in the Indian Premier League (IPL). First up the Madhya Pradesh lad pounced on Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) bowling attack by scoring an unbeaten 41 and later in the next game against Mumbai Indians (MI) he scored 53 to propel KKR to two mighty wins in the resumption of their IPL campaign in the UAE.
These two knocks from Iyer have left the experts impressed. The batter was snapped up by the KKR management earlier in the auctions due to his hitting ability. But strangely he was not given a game. With their campaign in need of a revival of sorts, the management turned to Iyer for some power hitting at the top and so far he has not disappointed.
Former cricketers Irfan Pathan and Matthew Hayden were effusive in praise of the KKR opener and lauded him for taking the attack to the opposition by his fearless batting. Pathan said how Iyer was happy with that one knock against RCB and kept playing with the same mindset against MI’s bowlers too.
We will see a lot of Iyer in future, says Pathan
“First match, he showed a lot of character. He showed some of the shots as well, cover drive and all. But there is always this question in your mind as a young player, what is going to happen in the next match. Who is going to turn up? Is it the same guy who is going to turn up?” he said on Star Sports post-match show
Mumbai Indians’ bowling attack comprised of Jasprit Bumrah, Trent Boult, and Adam Milne, yet Iyer was not bothered about the threat the trio possessed and kept playing his shots. Pathan lauded the temperament of the southpaw for tackling world-class pacers.
“He did, he actually turned up better, especially against Bumrah, against Boult. Against the Mumbai Indians bowling line-up, he showed a lot of character. There is a lot more we are going to see of Venkatesh Iyer in the future,” he explained.
Former Australia batter Matthew Hayden was not far behind and praised Iyer in a cheeky manner. “He got permission from his mother to play cricket. Wonderful stuff because let’s face it, fellas, we are all mummy’s boys at some point,” Hayden said.