Former India spinner and currently the Head Coach of Punjab Kings, Anil Kumble praised their new entrant Shahrukh Khan who has impressed Kumble with the hitting and destructive prowess. Kumble even compared him to the great Kieron Pollard as well.
Notably, Punjab have bought the middle-order batsman for a price of INR 5.25 crore at the mini-auction in Chennai a couple of months ago. The bowling great further recalled his experience of bowling to Pollard at the Mumbai Indians’ nets and claimed that the youngster has similar qualities and added the much-needed destructive ability to the squad as well. However, he was also in great form where he had a strike rate of 220 in the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy and impressed everyone in the Tamil Nadu Premier League.
“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 not to 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”.
However, on the other hand, Khan said that he was happy and surprised both to see the bidding war for him at the auction.
“The auction started at around 3 PM I guess, and we were practising at the Holkar Stadium, obviously I had to bat and bowl a bit. So I told our physio that ‘please let me know when my name comes up. I’ll take a break and come and see the auction.’ Luckily my name didn’t come up, and it didn’t bother my batting much. Right after we finished practice and we hopped onto the bus, I still remember sitting on the first seat and my name came up. My heart started pumping, but I didn’t expect it to rise as much as it did,” further added Shahrukh Khan.
However, he said that he is lucky for being a part of the Punjab Kings squad that is surrounded by renowned players from all over the world.
“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,” concluded Shahrukh Khan.