Padikkal powers to maiden fifty, AB De Villiers dazzles in Dubai – DN
Devdutt Padikkal became the second-youngest player to score a half-century on Indian Premier League (IPL) debut when he reached the milestone in 36 balls during the match between Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in Dubai on Monday.
Carrying his rich form from the last domestic season to the IPL, Padikkal began with aplomb cracking back to back boundaries of Hyderabad seamer Sandeep Sharma.
It was clean hitting from the youngster as he chipped down the track and then hit a blistering off-drive, reminding fans and pundits of a vintage Yuvraj Singh. This was the shot that set him in motion.
The left-hander continued to display his wide array of shots through the offside. With the gift of a wonderful ability to connect the shot and clear the infield, what was also impressive was how Paddikal always kept his head still, making sure false shots are at a minimum.
Vijay Shankar picked up his wicket in the 10th over but that was not before the southpaw had scored a scintillating 56 of 42 balls at a staggering strike rate of 133.33 Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) may have counted their stars after picking the Karnataka batsman for just Rs 20 lakh in the last year’s auction.
Padikkal was in exceptional form in the 50-over and 20-over format. He scored 580 runs in 12 games for Karnataka at an average of 64.44, which included five half-centuries and one century in the recently-concluded Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy.
The 18-year-old was among the three batsmen to score a century in the domestic T20 tournament and may end up being the first choice opener for RCB.
The 19-year-old doesn’t just anchor the innings, but hits the big shots as well with a T20 strike rate of 175.75. The southpaw has hit 33 sixes in 12 T20 games.
In his T20 career to date, Devdutt Padikkal scores at over 10rpo against both pace and spin bowling.
Solves RCB’s Powerplay woes
Last season, Bangalore were played a high-risk game in the Powerplay and were the second fastest scoring side in the first six overs (going at 8.5rpo). However, they also frequent wickets which hurt them badly in the middle overs.
The most Powerplay runs in a single match by RCB openers last season was by Parthiv Patel ( 43 and 39), Virat Kohli (34 & 29). Padikkal seems like he is already settling in well with his role and giving the perfect Powerplay performance.
It is no wonder that there is plenty of excitement surrounding the young Karnataka batsman.
Devdutt Padikkal debut match-
Fifty on the First-class debut: 77 vs Maharashtra 2018
Fifty on List-A debut: 58 vs Jharkhand 2019
Further fifty on T20 debut: 53* vs Uttarakhand 2019
Moreover, fifty on IPL debut: 51* vs SRH 2020
De Villiers dazzles
AB De Villiers rolled back the years with a pure exhibition of strokes and smash a quickfire fifty off just 30 balls. He also reached the milestone of 200 Sixes in IPL along the way.
Incidentally, 2.6 percent of all sixes in IPL history have been hit by AB de Villiers (according to CricViz).-PUNA