A tall young pacer, Nishanth Saranu from Hyderabad, caught Pakistan’s eye during their net session before the first ODI Cricket World Cup warm-up match. Pakistan is set to play New Zealand and Australia in the warm-up games on September 29 and October 3, respectively, at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad.
They will then kick off their World Cup campaign against the Netherlands on October 6 at the same venue. Nishanth, in his second year of U-19 cricket, served as one of the available net bowlers for the Pakistan team. The Pakistan support staff, led by bowling coach Morne Morkel, selected him from a group of net bowlers after Haris Rauf and Shaheen Shah Afridi completed their practice sessions.
Notably, Pakistani bowlers like Rauf and Shaheen typically deliver at speeds ranging from 140 to 150 kmph. Consequently, Nishanth was instructed to significantly boost his pace. Nishanth, a towering figure at six feet nine inches, was tasked with bowling to the lower-order batsmen during their initial practice session leading up to the highly anticipated ODI World Cup 2023.
The exception was opener Fakhar Zaman, who faced other bowlers. Notably, Fakhar Zaman suggested that the young fast bowler might find success by combining his extra bounce, derived from his imposing height, with an increase in pace.
“I currently can bowl up to 125-130 kmph. Morne (Morkel) sir asked me to increase my pace. He also inquired if I would be available to bowl at the nets of IPL franchise Lucknow Super Giants,” Nishanth was quoted as saying by The Hindu.
Nishanth aspires to play for Hyderabad soon and idolizes Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins
Surprisingly, the former South African pacer, despite his own considerable height, was impressed with the youngster. Pakistan’s bowling coach expressed interest in having Nishanth work with him in the IPL in the future. In terms of fast bowler idols, Nishanth mentioned admiring the Australian pair of Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins.
Regarding his near-future goals, the tall bowler from Hyderabad aims to begin with playing first-class cricket for Hyderabad before aspiring to represent the country on the international stage.
“My aim is to have a career in both white and red ball cricket. So, the immediate goal is to represent Hyderabad at the first-class level,” he added.
Notably, Nishanth has had the opportunity to bowl to batters from various countries, including New Zealand’s Glenn Phillips, in their net sessions. The young bowler is likely to receive numerous opportunities to showcase his skills as Pakistan will be in the city for an extended period of nearly two weeks.