India are currently trailing 0-2 in the five-match T20I series against South Africa. The visitors have completed two successive chases to put themselves ahead of the home side. As the teams are set to compete in the 3rd ODI to be played in Vizag, former Indian cricketer Sunil Gavaskar has asked for Umran Malik’s inclusion.
In the absence of Jasprit Bumrah, India are fielding a three-man pace attack along with two spinners and Hardik Pandya as the pace back up. While Bhuvneshwar Kumar has sparkled with the ball, Avesh Khan and Harshal Patel have not been as effective as they were in the IPL. With the series on line, Gavaskar wants the speedster from Sunrisers Hyderabad to make his India debut. He has compared the pace bower’s arrival with that of the legendary Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar.
“The last time I got really excited at seeing an Indian player was Sachin Tendulkar. And after that I am excited to see Umran Malik. I do believe he should play, but again they might say that let us win the third one and get ourselves in a situation, and then maybe they can think about experimenting,” Sunil Gavaskar said.
Malik grabbed attention in his debut season in the IPL 2021. Although he snared only two wickets in three appearances, his pace impressed one and all. Sunrisers retained the pacer and he duly delivered in the next edition. In IPL 2022, Malik collected 22 wickets in only 14 matches. The performance catapulted him among India’s probables and he is now part of the T20I squad.