Robin Uthappa heaped praise on the Indian bowler after the second T20I against New Zealand, saying that he possesses incredible skills and knows how to execute them in pressure situations.
Harshal Patel performed impressively on his Team India debut against New Zealand on Friday, registering figures of 2/25 in his four overs in Ranchi. The fast bowler was used in the death overs during the game, and took the key wicket of Glenn Philipps in the 17th over. Furthermore, he conceded only six runs in the second-last over of the New Zealand innings, as India restricted the Kiwis to 153/6.
Indian cricketer Robin Uthappa, talking about Harshal’s performance during the mid-innings break, said that Harshal is “definitely up there” with Jasprit Bumrah for a death-overs spot in the Indian team.
“If you consider a death-overs spot, he would definitely be up there for me along with Bumrah, because the kind of skills he possesses and the way he executes those skills under pressure, was incredible — especially in his second-last over where he conceded a six against Glenn Phillips, then bowled a no-ball in the second and the way he came back from there (dismissing Philipps on the next ball),” said Uthappa on ESPNCricinfo.
Former New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori, adding to Uthappa’s point, said that India could be a “formidable T20I side” if Harshal and Bumrah can pair up in the death overs.
“If Harshal Patel has that skill set, and we obviously know that Bumrah does, it sets a whole new dynamic to how you prepare your T20 setup. Your first six can be more and more attacking, you can see the likes of Avesh Khan coming as he can be a specialist at the top because you know you got those overs blocked away at the back (death),” said Vettori.
“There are not many bowlers who can do it (bowl at the death). If India have two, it sets them up as a formidable team.”