RR’s Director of Cricket Kumar Sangakkara has admitted that all-rounder Riyan Parag is a very special player and insisted that he has the ability to contribute to Indian cricket in the future. Alongside that, Sangakkara was also very vocal in praising Chetan Sakariya, calling him a ‘revelation’.
At the age of 17, Riyan Parag left a mark in the IPL, when he first made his debut for the Rajasthan Royals. Two years on, he has made himself a starter in the Royals set up, thanks to his all-round display for the franchise. This season, the youngster scored 78 runs in seven innings, at a strike rate of 144.44, showcasing his ability as a finisher.
With the ball, sparingly used, the youngster picked up the one wicket and showed his variations in the other. In the field, he was a live-wire, hanging on to six catches in the tournament, including three against Chennai Super Kings in a single match. RR’s Director of Cricket and legend of the game Kumar Sangakkara hailed Parag a ‘very special’ player and also admitted that he has the ability to contribute to Indian cricket in the future.
"Riyan Parag is also a very, very special player. He's got a huge amount to contribute not just to Rajasthan Royals, but also Indian cricket in the future. He's a very special talent that needs care, nurturing and development. We had Kuldip Yadav and Akash Singh the two left-arm fast bowlers who worked extremely hard but didn't get a chance, but they worked extremely hard in the nets and I saw a lot of improvement in them from Day 1 to the time that the tournament was on,” said Sangakkara in the press-conference, reported Cricbuzz.
Like how Parag broke through in 2019, this year was all about Chetan Sakariya, who not only broke into the team but also left an indelible mark on the setup. In seven games, he ended up picking seven wickets, showcasing his skills in both the powerplay and in the death, to restrict the opposition. Sangakkara pointed out at Sakariya’s rise, and called the left-armer a revelation.
“Mayank Markande, Chetan Sakariya, highly skilled cricketers... Mayank was touch and go in selection. All of them were very impressive. Chetan Sakariya was a revelation. He's had a tough year since January so far and our love and prayers are with him. His attitude and ability to build pressure and of course his skill. It's wonderful to have him in the side,” he added.
Rajasthan’s jewels don’t end there, with the trio of Anuj Rawat, Yashasvi Jaiswal and Mahipal Lomror too making quite an impact in the last two seasons. While Jaiswal had a slow start last year, this year, in the limited opportunities, he showed a range of shots to impress the management. Alongside that, Sangakkara also praised the local lad Mahipal Lomror and added that the southpaw has worked really hard in the nets.
“We have Anuj, Yash, Mahipal, three youngsters who have been with the franchise for a long time and I was very impressed by all three of them. Yash got a reasonable amount of time in the middle, unfortunately the match that Anuj got, he didn't get a chance to bat, but he was outstanding in the field. And Mahi worked really hard in the nets to put his hand up for selection. Those three boys were just outstanding for us.”