Former India opener Virender Sehwag was hugely impressed with hard-hitting Tamil Nadu batsman Shahrukh Khan. The 25-year-old made his IPL debut for Punjab Kings (PBKS) in the tournament that was suspended recently, and played some impressive cameos down the order.
Sehwag went to the extent of stating that Shahrukh Khan’s clean-hitting ability reminded him of a young Kieron Pollard. The retired Indian cricketer told Cricbuzz:
“He (Shahrukh Khan) reminds us of a young Pollard, when he had just come into the IPL. Everyone was running after him, because he could just stand and hit sixes off bowlers. Shahrukh has the same quality.”
Sehwag further added about Shahrukh Khan:
“Although he has played those little innings and hasn’t played a big knock. But the lower you bat in the line-up, there’s only so much he can do.”
Shahrukh Khan was purchased by PBKS for INR 5.25 crore at the IPL 2021 auction. Batting in the lower-order, he scored 107 runs from eight matches at a strike rate of 127.38. His best score of 47 came off 36 balls against Chennai Super Kings. Shahrukh Khan was the top-scorer for PBKS in the match where they had lost half their side for 26.
The young batsman also contributed an unbeaten 15 off five balls against Delhi Capitals and 22 off 17 against Sunrisers Hyderabad. Prior to the IPL 2021, Shahrukh Khan had a strike rate of over 200 in Tamil Nadu’s victorious Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy campaign. He also scored 198 runs in five games in the Vijay Hazare Trophy.
Shahrukh Khan could hit a century if he bats higher up: Virender Sehwag
Shahrukh Khan did not get a chance to play too many substantial knocks for PBKS in the first half of IPL 2021 as he was batting lower down the order. However, from what he has seen from Shahrukh Khan, Sehwag believes the batsman is good enough to score a T20 hundred if promoted in the batting order. According to Sehwag:
“If he can be given a chance to bat higher, the day he clicks, he could even hit a century. He is the kind of player for whom it doesn’t matter what happened the previous ball. Many batsmen think ‘Oh, I got beaten, this one turned’. Those who don’t think about the previous ball, they have a higher success rate.”
Shahrukh Khan has featured in 39 T20 matches till date and has scored 400 runs at a strike rate of 130.29.