Umran Malik will be a ‘great bowler’ for India, says Chaminda Vaas | Cricket News

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MUMBAI: Add one more name to the Umran Malik ‘fan club.’ On Wednesday, Sri Lanka’s pace great Chaminda Vaas remarked that the tearaway rookie Sunrisers Hyderabad pacer from Jammu – who won his 13th consecutive fastest delivery award in IPL-2022 when he clocked 154.8 kmph on Tuesday night – will become a “great bowler” for India, and “will go a long way.”
With 21 wickets, Umran is the fourth highest wicket-taker in the tournament, with best figures of five for 25. “I think he (Umran) is getting better day by day and I saw him playing in the last IPL as well. He is bowling (with pace) consistently and accuracy is important when it comes to T20 cricket. And he will be a great bowler for India. He will be there with (Jasprit) Bumrah (as a bowling pair), I guess, if India gives him a chance. He will go a long way,” Vaas, in the city to coach kids at the Mumbai Cricket Club, run by coach Jwala Singh, said.
Having taken 355 wickets in 111 Tests and 400 wickets in 322 ODIs with his penetrative left-arm pace bowling, and later taken over as the bowling coach of Sri Lanka, Vaas has a fair idea about quality fast bowling.
Vaas attributed the emergence of not just Umran, but a clutch of talented young pacers – Arshdeep Singh, Umran, Avesh Khan, Mukesh Chaudhary, Mohsin Khan to name a few – in this IPL and in the previous editions of the league to India’s solid good first-class cricket structure. “India has a good first-class structure and most of the first-class teams are producing lots of (good) cricketers and even Indian cricket has a plan going forward. This is why they are able to produce so many fast bowlers and good cricketers,” Vaas asserted.
The 48-year-old was naturally pleased with the fine performances of many Sri Lankans- especially leggie Wanindu Hasaranga (second highest wicket-taker in IPL-15 with 23 wickets@14.65 for Royal Challengers Bangalore), batsman Bhanuka Rajapaksa (206 runs in nine games@22.88, strike rate 159.68 for Punjab Kings), pacer Dushmantha Chameera (nine wickets in 11 games@36.66 for Lucknow Super Giants)-after a long time in the IPL. Vaas said that it will pave the way for the younger cricketers to come and play in the lucrative T20 league.
“I am so glad that in this IPL, most of the Sri Lankan got opportunities and they believe in themselves that they can do (play) a bigger role in the IPL. And the best example is Wanindu (Hasaranga). Wanindu is a star and he has always performed well in the Sri Lanka team but here (in the IPL) he is doing amazing. Not only him but others are doing (playing) their part (well) and it is good for the future players of Sri Lanka to come and play in the IPL. It is a morale-booster for the youngsters,” felt Vaas.
Having worked on the skills of the impressive Chameera, Vaas was especially pleased with the seamer’s upward curve. “Dushmantha has come a long way. I was working with the national set-up for eight months and he has improved a lot. I am already pleased with his performance and he will be a future star,” he praised.
Vaas predicted a bright future for young pacer Matheesha Pathirana- known as ‘Baby Malinga’ due to his slingy action which is similar to Sri Lanka’s pace bowling great Lasith Malinga-who made his IPL debut for the Chennai Super Kings last week. “When I was the Under-19 coach (of Sri Lanka), he (Matheesha) came from that group. I’ve seen his potential. He is bowling like Malinga and he has a brilliant future. With his action, he might get injuries. He has to look after himself and Sri Lanka Cricket (also needs to) take care of him,” he stressed.
‘Glad that Indian govt has helped us’
Meanwhile, Vaas thanked the Indian government for helping out Sri Lanka, which is currently in the midst of a massive economic crisis. “I am not in politics, but this issue is a big mess in Sri Lanka. I was glad that the Indian government has helped us to come (out) this situation in a better way,” he said.





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