Future of Indian Cricket – the IPL prodigy: It might have been started as an experiment but over the years the IPL has strongly established itself as a part of Indian and world cricket. Without a doubt it is a platform which most domestic players cherish. The IPL allows them to compete with the best cricketers of the world and prove their worth. Indian cricket has got many gems out of the tournament who are serving the nation in every format of the game. Right from Manish Pandey, the guy who scored the first century by an Indian in IPL to the recent sensation Shreyas Iyer, the league has given the problem of plenty to the Indian selectors. Now that’s always a better problem than the case of struggling to find players for the national side. The IPL has given India the bench strength in the true sense of the word.
Who was Ravindra Jadeja before Shane Warne spotted him in the IPL and gave him the license to play expressive cricket. The ‘Rockstar’ as Shane called him is now an indispensable member of the Indian squad. The kind of strokes that Ajinkya Rahane has in his arsenal today is a testimony of the effort he put during the IPL. Akshar Patel got a world cup flight only because he impressed the five wise men with his accurate bowling in the IPL.
Once we learn to separate performances and players for different formats, the IPL would look so much more useful. The focus has to be to award domestic performances with IPL selections and not the other way round. Under 19 WC stars like Sandeep Sharma can learn a lot bowling alongside reputed international names like Mitchell Johnson. Suryakumar Yadav and Deepak Hudda can test themselves with the best in the world. Virat Kohli can learn the tricks to captaincy and handling pressure. All this is possible because of the IPL. Who knows Mayank Aggrawal could well be the next Rohit Sharma, Naman Ojha a perfect competitor to Wriddhiman Saha and Mandeep Singh the next big thing in Indian cricket.
A general look at the batting prospects and we can safely argue that the future is in good hands. When you see talent like Sanju Samson sitting out you know about the caliber of Indian cricket. Manan Vohra looks ten years mature to his age when he plays those sumptuous cover drives. Karun Nair is not far from an India call up. KL Rahul has shown what he is capable of, with that scintillating century in Adelaide. Shreyas Iyer does not have the word ‘fear’ in his dictionary.
The current crop we are witnessing could well be men who will write the future of Indian cricket and take it to new heights.