“He has extra pace, which is something unique in Indian cricket”

Former Pakistan captain Salman Butt reckons young fast bowler Umran Malik could find himself playing for India soon if he maintains his pace and consistency.

Malik impressed with his speed in the few games he played for Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in the second half of IPL 2021. He constantly hit the 150 kmph mark.

Earlier this month, the 21-year-old speedster from Jammu and Kashmir was named in the 14-member India A squad for the tour of South Africa, which starts from November 23.

In an interaction on his YouTube channel, Butt was asked if Malik could be part of the Indian team in the upcoming series’. Replying that there was a decent chance of that happening, the former cricketer explained:

“Umran Malik can be included in the Indian team soon if he does well in South Africa during the A tour. He has extra pace, which is something unique in Indian cricket. He consistently bowls at 150 kph. If he can carry on maintaining the speed, he will hold a special status. If he does well (in South Africa), I am sure he will be picked soon in the national team.”

Umran Malik and Mohammed Siraj have altogether bowled the fastest deliveries by Indian Pacers in IPL 2021 🙌Umran Malik with the top 3️⃣ 👏#IPL2021 #RCB #SRH https://t.co/MV5VpRMW8X

Butt also pointed out that India need to have a good pool of players in both batting and bowling if they want to do well in the next T20 World Cup in Australia. The former opening batter explained:

“The next World Cup is in Australia and India will need additional options for that event. India have a number of youngsters who can be tried out over the next 10 months. Few of them can play in the last T20I (against New Zealand). They have won the series, so it is a perfect opportunity to try them out.”

India defeated New Zealand by seven wickets in the second T20I of the three-match series in Ranchi on Friday. With the win, they took an unassailable 2-0 lead, having won the first game by five wickets.

“Rohit Sharma is always looking to take wickets” – Salman Butt on Team India’s new T20 captain

India’s preparations for the next T20 World Cup have begun with the ongoing T20I series against New Zealand at home. The three-game series is Rohit Sharma’s first assignment as full-time Team India skipper.

Asked to evaluate Rohit’s captaincy after two matches, Butt responded:

“Rohit Sharma is an attacking captain and a thinking cricketer. He is busy and is always looking to take wickets through his fielding and bowling changes.”

India will take on New Zealand in the third T20I at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Sunday, November 21.

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