Venkatesh Iyer. (Image Credits: Twitter)
Former Indian keeper-batsman Parthiv Patel hailed Kolkata Knight Riders opener Venkatesh Iyer for trusting himself and playing fearlessly. Venkatesh Iyer has played only two games in the IPL but has stamped his authority in both with his attacking gameplay.
Iyer, who struck an unbeaten 41 on his IPL debut in a win against RCB, hammered a half-century in KKR’s seven-wicket win against Mumbai Indians on Thursday. The southpaw launched Kolkata’s pursuit of 156 fiercely against Mumbai and departed when his side required only 28 more to win.
Speaking on Star Sports, Parthiv Patel said Iyer has shown plenty of maturity as a vastly inexperienced player. The 26-year old impressed Patel with his ability to impose himself on world-class bowlers.
“We do talk about a lot of boundaries. But the maturity that Venkatesh Iyer showed was superb. We are talking about someone who is not an India A player, someone who has not played international cricket. He showed so much maturity and courage to go out there and back himself.”
The 36-year old highlighted Iyer’s versatility and predicted a bright future for him. He also underlined that the southpaw’s elegance and flow reminded him of Yuvraj Singh. He added:
“That’s something we always look out for in young players in the IPL. He went out and played fearless cricket. One of the great things about him, having seen him, he can not only open, he can bat from 1 to 9 and bowl as well. So he will have a great future. I think there is a lot of Yuvraj Singh in him. There is a lot of flow.”
Iyer reached his fifty against the defending champions in 25 deliveries before Jasprit Bumrah cleaned him up. However, the left-hander was unstoppable during the powerplay and tonked four fours and three sixes in his knock.
“I love the way Iyer goes about his cricket”: Graeme Swann
Graeme Swann. (Image Credits: Getty)
Former England spinner Graeme Swann agreed with Patel, pointing out Iyer’s impressive shots off Trent Boult and Adam Milne. Swann feels he is calm and composed, but still has that ‘swag’ to dominate the bowlers.
“He has got swag. He is very cool, calm and collected. He doesn’t show a lot of emotions. First ball against Boult and Milne was hit for six. When the spinner comes on, the helmet comes off. He is flicking that hair back. The boy has got swag and talent. I love the way he goes about his cricket. He is my Man of the Match.”
While the Knight Riders won the match comfortably, Sunil Narine pipped Iyer for the man of the match award. However, he seems to have resolved their opening issues as the side boosted its playoff chances.