Punjab Kings' (PBKS) Director of Cricket Operations, Anil Kumble, has on Sunday (April 4) showered rich praise on the franchise’s newest recruit Shahrukh Khan ahead of the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2021) starting April 9 in Chennai.
Kumble, India’s spin legend, said the 25-year-old Tamil Nadu batsman reminds him of the West Indies’ hard-hitting all-rounder Kieron Pollard, saying he isn’t going bowl to the youngsters at the Punjab Kings' net session given his age at the moment.
Ahead of the start of the IPL 2021, Kumble recalled his experience with Mumbai Indians when he used to bowl to Pollard in the nets, where he was very dangerous even and he always told him not to hit straight and now in the Punjab Kings, Shahrukh Khan has a similar skill.
He was seen praising the right-hander, who was bought by the PBKS for INR 5.25 crore after winning a bidding war against Delhi Capitals and Royal Challengers Bangalore at the IPL 2021 auction, in a video shared by the franchise on its official Twitter handle on Sunday.
Kumble said in the video, “He reminds me a bit of Pollard actually. When I was with Mumbai Indians, Pollard in the nets was dangerous. I used to bowl a bit (in the nets), and the first thing I used to tell him was don't hit straight.
Here I'm not even trying. I'm a lot older now, and the body doesn't take the bowling anymore. So, I'm not going to bowl at Shahrukh, for sure.”
Meanwhile, Shahrukh also shared his experience with Punjab Kings as he is all set to make his IPL debut in the upcoming IPL 14 – where his team will kick off their campaign against the Rajasthan Royals (RR) on April 12 at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
He said in the same video shared by the franchise, “Being amongst such stalwarts of cricket, it feels amazing to be here and the inputs have been great. I have been having a lot of conversations with everyone around here, getting to learn a lot as well.”
Noteworthy, He has played 31 T20 matches thus far, scoring 293 runs at a strike rate of 131.39. He also featured in 5 First-class and 25 List-A games and managed 231 and 484 runs respectively so far.