In the early days of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021, uncapped Indian left-arm pacer Chetan Sakariya has emerged as one of the brightest prospects for Rajasthan Royals (RR).
Sakariya seems to be repaying the trust shown on him by the RR team management and ownership group after being picked in the playing XI to plug a major hole in the team.
Indian fast-bowling was one of RR’s unresolved issues in the last year’s edition of the IPL in UAE where they ended at the bottom of the points table. But so far, Sakariya seems to have relished the responsibility on that front for the inaugural season champions.
The youngster was picked by RR in the IPL 2021 auction in February for a sum of INR 1.20 crores after impressing with his performances for Saurashtra in the Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 earlier in the year.
Sakariya had claimed 12 wickets from his 5 outings while going for only 4.90 runs per over in India’s senior domestic state-based T20 tournament.
Chetan Sakariya Shines Again For Rajasthan Royals (RR) versus Chennai Super Kings (CSK)
On his IPL debut versus Punjab Kings (PBKS) on April 12, Chetan Sakariya raised the eyebrows with a spell of 3/31 at a high-scoring venue like the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. The youngster looked unfazed by the magnitude of the situation and the challenge, showing promising temperament under pressure.
Chetan Sakariya proved effective for RR again when they took on Chennai Super Kings (CSK) at the same venue. The 23-year-old got the prized scalps of Ambati Rayudu, Suresh Raina and opposition captain MS Dhoni as they all went about trying to hit him off his lengths, only to miscue the ball straight to the RR fieldsmen.
The most heartwarming wicket of the night for Sakariya would’ve of course been that of Dhoni, who looked for a big shot through the mid-wicket region on a fuller length, slow away cutter but didn’t get the desired connection and was caught top-edging the ball to the man positioned at cover.
Chetan Sakariya has made good use of the left-arm angle and his variations, including the away cutter to the right-handers and the back off the arm slower balls, in the IPL 2021 so far. The element of surprise that he carries about him as of now has only made it tougher for the batters.
Sakariya doesn’t bowl at an express pace – through the air or off the deck – but boasts of decent control and consistency, besides the nous of when to use his variations, which shall hold him in good stead as he goes deeper into his IPL journey.