IPL 2021: “Captain asked me who is better option – you or Abhishek” – Mohammad Nabi reveals story of incredible 13th over
Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) all-rounder Mohammad Nabi has said that he suggested left-arm spinner Abhishek Sharma should bowl the 13th over against Mumbai Indians (MI).
MI pounded SRH in match 55 of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 in Abu Dhabi on Friday, bludgeoning 235-9 batting first. Mumbai then eased to an emphatic 42-run win.
Some rare moments of joy for SRH came in the 13th over when young Sharma dismissed Kieron Pollard (13) and James Neesham (0) off consecutive deliveries. Pollard was brilliantly out-thought, as he slammed a full ball outside off down the ground. But stand-in skipper Manish Pandey had placed a fielder there exactly for that shot. Neesham then edged the next ball to cover.
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Asked about the planning behind bringing Sharma on, Nabi revealed what exactly transpired.
“The captain asked me who is the better option – you or Abhishek? I said Abhishek is a slightly better option because of the pitch and also because he can slide the ball into the right-handed batsmen. And that plan worked at that hour,” the Afghanistan off-spinner explained to a Sportskeeda query in this regard.
Intriguingly, although Sharma was on a hat-trick, he did not bowl another over in the innings. On the rationale behind that, Nabi elaborated:
“In the next over (15th over), there was a left-handed (Krunal Pandya) batter and also the short boundary on the other side. So I told the captain I will bowl it. That’s how it all worked according to the plan.”
While Sharma had figures of 2 for 4 from his one over, Nabi went wicketless, conceding 33 in his three.
“Everyone is prepared for the World Cup” – Mohammad Nabi
With SRH’s campaign in IPL 2021 drawing to a close, Nabi and fellow Afghanistan spinner Rashid Khan will now join national duty for the upcoming T20 World Cup.
Asked for an update on the same, the 36-year-old all-rounder said:
“Regarding the World Cup preparations, the team is waiting for the UAE visa. They have already started training in Qatar to adjust to the weather. Everyone is prepared for the World Cup.”
Afghanistan will begin their T20 World Cup 2021 campaign by taking on a qualifier from Round 1 on October 25 in Sharjah. Nabi has been named the captain of the squad after Rashid Khan stepped down from the post.
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