In the first half of the tournament, the KKRs were at the 7th spot in the Indian Premier League 2021 points table. After a slow start to their IPL season, Kolkata Knight Riders found their mojo in the UAE with two consecutive wins. This allowed them to climb up further in the IPL points table keeping the hopes alive for making it into playoffs this season!
The key to their turnaround has been opening batter Venkatesh Iyer. Not only does he provide good starts but the 26-year old also chips in with balls in middle overs, making him an invaluable asset for this team of young talent
Sanjay Manjrekar, former India batter says he is “impressed” with Venkatesh Iyer’s all-round show. He believes the KKR youngster could fetch a very high price in the IPL auction next season!
“I’m thinking 12-14 crores because this is not a kind of a fluke show. I was looking at his First-Class numbers and his List A record is outstanding. His average is 47, strikes at 92 (98). Then is his T20 record in domestic cricket, not counting the IPL. His strike rate is high, he averages 37 (38.20). So this is a guy who knows how to bat. Plus, he is a bowler, and in the last match, he has shown that he can bowl the tough overs too. So he is somebody who is going to fetch a very high price,” Manjrekar told ESPNCricinfo.
The 26-year old batsman, Venkatesh, from Madhya Pradesh has made his IPL debut in the phase 2 of 2021 IPL and has successfully scored over 200 runs in just six matches. Venkatesh has also picked up 3 wickets at an economy rate of under 9 per over. Not bad for someone who was thought to be just a tweener batsman!
Sanjay Manjrekar also said that Venkatesh Iyer looks like a “really qualified game-changer”.
“Today, I focussed on the way he bats. Very interestingly, he bats a lot on the backfoot. Looks to pull, play the cut. So this is a batter who is not going down the pitch and trying to hit – forcing everything. He is staying on backfoot, cutting and pulling and then he’s got a big stride forward. I see him more as a really qualified T20 game-changer than somebody having a couple of good weeks,” Manjrekar added.