Chennai (Tamil Nadu) : Mumbai Indians pace bowler Akash Madhwal has asserted that he is not a replacement for India’s star bowler Jasprit Bumrah and is merely fulfilling the responsibility entrusted to him.
The young 29-year-old bowler has been the breakout star for the Mumbai Indians after his impressive performance against Lucknow Super Giants in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 Eliminator at the MA Chidambaram Stadium on Wednesday. ‘I am trying my best to fulfill the responsibilities given to me by the team. I am not Bumrah’s replacement but I’m trying my best to do what I can,’ he said.
Madhwal was a part of the Royal Challengers Bangalore as a net bowler in 2018 but has emerged as one of the crucial figures for MI in the bowling department.
‘I was a net bowler with Royal Challengers Bangalore. Later on, I joined Mumbai Indians and started out as a net bowler again. Fast forward to today, I am getting the opportunity to play in the team,’ Madwal said after the match, according to Mumbai Indians.com.
The Indian pace bowler had a dream to shine for his team since he became a part of the IPL outfit. He has spent time in the training nets and waited for an opportunity to come his way.
‘I have been practising a lot and waiting for my opportunity. I have done engineering, cricket is my passion and I have been waiting for this since 2018. When we practice in the nets, the management gives us the target and we try to execute our best. Hoping to do well in the coming games and want to end up as champions.’
Madhwal was in the limelight as he produced the best bowling figures by an uncapped player in the IPL. He ended with figures of 5/5. Ankit Rajpoot held the record since 2018 with an exceptional figure of 5/14 for the Punjab Kings.
Madhwal’s 3.3 overs were the key to MI’s success. He dismissed the dangerous left-handed batter Nicholas Pooran which was a crucial breakthrough in the MI’s journey towards Qualifier 2. MI’s skipper Rohit Sharma also heaped praise on his exceptional efforts.
‘He (Akash) was the part of the team last year as a support bowler, and once Jofra was gone, I knew he had skills and the character to do the job for us. Over the years we have seen many guys coming in from Mumbai Indians and playing for India,’ he said after the match.
‘It is important to make them (youngsters) feel special and make them feel part of the team, my job is to just make them comfortable in the middle. They are very clear in their roles about what they need to do for the team and that’s what you want.’
MI will hope that Madhwal continues his exceptional form in Qualifier 2 against Gujarat Titans at the Narendra Modi Stadium on Friday.