Home > Features >

Amit Mishra: The wicket-taker MS Dhoni needs to unleash in ICC World T20 2014

Amit Mishra was in fine form in Asia Cup 2014 © AFP (File Photo)
Amit Mishra was in fine form in Asia Cup 2014 © AFP (File Photo)

By Taus Rizvi

Amit Mishra has seldom enjoyed the confidence of skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni. But he has never taken the apparent snub to heart. In fact, the leg-spinner has always let his bowling do the talking.

A ‘passenger’ on most tours, Mishra recently got an opportunity to display his skills under Virat Kohli in the Asia Cup 2014. He impressed one-and-all with his bag of tricks. His two for 28 in that high-pressure game against Pakistan was noteworthy. If not for that blitz from Shahid Afridi, India would have won the contest and booked a place in the final.

Mishra, who hails from Delhi but represents Haryana in First-Class cricket, should be an automatic choice in the Indian XI for the upcoming ICC World T20 2014 in Bangladesh. That Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja are also part of the squad shouldn’t go against Mishra. His ability to bowl wicket-taking deliveries holds him in good stead.

A cursory look at the numbers also tells us that the leggie has an edge over the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) duo of Ashwin and Jadeja, both of whom enjoy Dhoni’s confidence. Mishra is the second-highest wicket-taker in Indian Premier League (IPL) history. With 95 wickets in 76 games, Mishra is second only to Lasith Malinga (103). The leg-spinner picks up a wicket every seven deliveries in the Twenty20 (T20) extravaganza. He has represented three teams — Delhi Daredevils (DD), Deccan Chargers (DC) and Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) — and has taken a hat-trick for each of them.

Conversely, Ashwin has only 64 wickets from 67 matches. Jadeja’s record is mediocre to say the least: in 78 matches, the left-arm spinner has taken merely 39 wickets.

ICC World T20 2014 schedule: Match time table with venue details

Such has been the impact of Mishra in T20s cricket that Hyderabad even used their ‘right to match’ card to retain him for Rs 4.75 crore in the recent IPL auction. Delhi were also trying to buy him.

For Dhoni, who will be looking to win his second ICC World T20 title, Mishra will be the right man to go. After all, he is a wicket-taker; Ashwin and Jadeja generally look to stem the flow of runs. They wait for the batsman to make mistakes, Mishra, on the other hand, forces the batsman to err. On those super-slow wickets in Bangladesh, Mishra would be more than a handful with his attacking line. For someone who bowls slower through the air, his deliveries would force the batsman to generate power. A multidimensional bowler, Mishra is well-versed with the art of containing too, We saw that in the Asia Cup.

Former India leg-spinner Narendra Hirwani, who mentors Mishra, opined that his ward should be Dhoni’s go-to man in the ICC World T20 2014. “He has shown his abilities in the Asia Cup. He is a wicket-taker and does his job perfectly. The captain may not be a huge fan of his, but Mishra makes full use of whatever opportunity he gets,” said Hirwani, who was part of the previous national selection committee.

Hirwani went on, “Dhoni needs to have faith in Mishra. He has to give him the confidence he gives to the other bowlers. Just because Dhoni can play leg-spin well, it doesn’t mean that every batsman in world cricket can. Mishra deserves a longer run,” he added.

So how handy will be Mishra in Bangladesh? “The wickets will obviously be on the slower side. The batsman will find it tough to score freely. And as a result, they will try to force the issue by hitting the ball hard. That’s when you end up mistiming the ball. Mishra will be deadly on such wickets. I have told him to bowl slower through the air. His pace should be below the 80-kph mark as not many batsman practice against such slow deliveries. And don’t forget, he has many a trick up his sleeve. He bowls a brilliant googly. Mishra should be India’s No 1 bowler in the tournament,” Hirwani said.

(Taus Rizvi is a Principal Correspondent with DNA. A club-level cricketer, he believes cricket helps in knowing a person’s character. Taus can be followed on @rizvitaus on Twitter. The above news has been republished with permission from DNA, were it first appeared)

India tour of England 2014

Aug 30, 2014 (15:00 IST)   at Nottingham

Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Aug 30, 2014 (10:00 IST)   at Dambulla

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Aug 31, 2014 (13:00 IST)   at Harare

India tour of England 2014

Sep 2, 2014 (15:00 IST)   at Birmingham

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Sep 2, 2014 (13:00 IST)   at Harare

More

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Aug 29, 2014  at Harare

South Africa won by 61 runs

Zimbabwe Triangular Series, 2014

Aug 27, 2014  at Harare

South Africa won by 7 wkts

Bangladesh Tour of West Indies, 2014

Aug 27, 2014  at Basseterre, St Kitts

No result

India tour of England 2014

Aug 27, 2014  at Cardiff

India won by 133 runs

Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Aug 26, 2014  at Hambantota

Sri Lanka won by 77 runs

Photos

Aaron Finch's record 156 vs England in T20I

Videos

Alastair Cook looks ahead to 3rd ODI at Nottingham

Zimbabwe vs South Africa Live Cricket Score, 3rd ODI at Harare: South Africa win by 61 runs

England, take ODIs seriously if you want to win

Hiralal Gaekwad: the southpaw who lost out to Vinoo Mankad

Lord Ganesha XI: Eleven cricketers who were named after the elephant God

Suresh Raina’s new avatar on India’s tour of England 2014

Australia Australia and South Africa in Zimbabwe 2014 England England vs India England vs India 2014 India India tour of England 2014 India vs England India vs England 2014 Pakistan South Africa Sri Lanka Sri Lanka vs Pakistan 2014 Zimbabwe Zimbabwe Triangular Series 2014

Suresh Raina feels Murali Vijay, Sanju Samson, and Ambati Rayudu are options to open

Rajinikanth finds a fan in Ross Taylor!

Prosper Utseya’s hat-trick in vain as South Africa clinch 61 run victory against Zimbabwe in 3rd ODI

India tour of England 2014: Alex Hales wants to play Test cricket

Aditya Verma: Will oppose N Srinivasan or BCCI if AGM is delayed

Sri Lanka vs Pakistan 3rd ODI at Dambulla: Key clashes

Statistical review of most centuries scored in a single day in ODIs

India enjoy an Emphatic victory against England in the 1st ODI — just like the first Test

Rilee Rossouw’s golden duck ‘feat’

Rohit Sharma’s injury gives Murali Vijay a new lease of life in ODI career

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

666 Posts | 6 Fans

12 runs in one ball

International programme in Animal Husbandry

Watch Stephen Hawkins endorse the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Sri Lanka vs Pakistan 3rd ODI at Hambantota: Key clashes

Apple iWatch won’t ship until next year: Report

Canada Welcomes 150,000 New Citizens In 2014

Ganesh Chaturthi 2014: Gurmeet Choudhary and Debina Bonnerjee celebrate Ganeshotsav with the team of Khamoshiyan – view pics!

Patti Tripathi: From News Director to Entrepreneur to Women’s Empowerment

NGOs pursue education for all

Sri Lanka vs Pakistan 3rd ODI at Dambulla: Key clashes

Apple iPhone 6 photos with full casing leaked ahead of September 9 launch

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here